Oil deal queried

The government has been warned to explain and justify the award of the US$500million dollar fuel supply contract to Trafigura a company whose subsidiary in Zambia,  Puma was fined K50billion by the Competition Commission for violating acquisition conditions.

Trafigura is reported to have bought KenolKobil a company which had challenged the award of the country, subsequently leading to the withdrawal of the case.

MMD president Dr. Nevers Mumba has called on President Michael Sata to rescind and regularize the contract or face future prosecution.

Trafigura will therefore be a procurer, wholesaler and retailer through its Puma outlets in Zambia.

Dr. Mumba said he was aware that  a named official in the Ministry of Energy received a phone call from a High Ranking Politician from the ruling PF to award the contract without following procedures as required by tender procedures.

He said that the US$ 500 million fuel deal would be probed if the PF government did not revisit it while in government because it was a corrupt deal.

He said, if this was not true the PF government must tell the nation why Trafigura which came out number five and Gunvor which only bid in one category were awarded the contracts.

Dr. Mumba said his party was aware of the maneuvers and interests the PF government had in the fuel deals and the subsequent awarding of the multi-million dollar fuel deal to Trafigura and Gunvor.

“My position is that we are aware that PS Energy received a telephone call from higher offices and was directed to award the tender to Trafigura despite this company not being the best of all the fuel bidders. So we are saying that let them deal with these matters while they are in government because we shall follow them immediately they leave office to explain the corruption in fuel procurement,” warned Dr. Mumba.

He said it was wrong for President Sata and government to ignore the issues being raised by stakeholders in corporate governance.

In all 23 companies participated in the oil procurement but the two companies Trafigura and Gunvor were awarded the contracts amid controversy and contention.

Earlier this year a number of prominent Zambians visited Switzerland in what has been described as exploratory talks for oil supply.

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