KAMPALA – The National Water & Sewerage Corporation has dismissed social media rumours that it’s directors were involved in impropriety regarding the procurement of pre-paid meters for ministries and government departments.
“This is an old discredited story. It is grossly inaccurate. This is the second time it is being circulated,” said Sam Apedel, the NWSC Senior Public Relations Manager.
In 2015 NWSC undertook to install prepaid meters in ministries and government departments to help manage bills and prevent accumulation of arrears. The contract was worth UGX. 3.4 billion.
But according to Mr. Apedel, the contractor did not perform to expectations, and the procurement was cancelled after the Corporation systems identified the problem through the normal process of contract management.
“Management instituted an audit of the quality of the meters and they were found to be of poor quality. The supplier was given time to rectify the issue and they failed so the procurement was cancelled,” Dr. Silver Mugisha, the NSWC Managing Director told this website on Tuesday.
“Neither the corporation nor her customers were affected by the prepaid meters,” Dr. Mugisha added.
Accordingly, the supplier had been paid some money through letters of credit but the remainder of the payment was withheld.
“The supplier’s performance security was also cashed. Also, payments to the supplier on other contracts were withheld. Actually, the government did not lose any money,” Dr. Mugisha told PML Daily in an interview.
NWSC later re-tendered the project and another contractor finished the job in time and within cost and the meters are operating in government departments and ministries
“There was no financial loss whatsoever,” says Mr. Apedel.
According to the NWSC, the 17 billion being mentioned in the social media rumours are five times the total contract value of the prepaid meters of 3.4 billion, and those who exhibited contract managerial negligence were reprimanded in line with the corporation’s human resources manual.
“The story is malicious and in bad faith,” Mr. Apedel said.