The parliamentary committee on Tourism, Trade, and Industry has halted the awarding of contracts by Uganda National Bureau of Standards to any of the prequalified companies for inspection of pre-shipment vehicles pending investigations under which a Chinese company JEVIC has been illegitimately operating.
On Tuesday, the committee received information from a witness, Kenneth Lubogo, Member of Parliament for Bulamogi county about the illegitimate awarding of the contract to Japan Export Vehicle Inspection Centre for inspection of pre-shipment vehicles.
“They were found to have imported vehicles that had radioactive elements,” Lubogo said.
As the committee proceedings went on, another witness; Robert Centenary,Kasese Municipality Member of Parliament added on to Lubogo’s submission saying that government is losing revenue over the monopoly of inspecting pre-shipment vehicles. He called for the cancellation of JEVIC’s contract immediately.
“It also deprives Uganda of revenue, you can’t have a high turnover with only one company doing the inspection,” Centenary said.
The contract in question was awarded to JEVIC by Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) even when the UNBS board had decided otherwise. UNBS awarded JEVIC a five-year contract as compensation for cancelling the 3 years contracted earlier awarded.
“JEVIC doesn’t have the technology to inspect these vehicles, they only hire,” Lubogo added.
The committee chaired by Alex Ruhunda resolved to halt awarding of a new contract by UNBS pending investigations on the working relationship between UNBS and JEVIC.
“All parties involved in the award of this contract will be summoned and they’ll give us full information which will enable us to come up with better conclusions.”
When contacted, UNBS’ deputy director in charge of standards, Patricia Ejaru, said they were not ready to comment on the contract matter because they haven’t received parliament’s decision officially.