The Kenya Power and Lighting Company (KPLC) has raised concerns over the low uptake of tenders allocated to women, persons living with disabilities, and youth under the AGPO program.
It associates the low uptake to various reasons including lack of duly registered and complaint businesses, low understanding of the e-procurement system, and targeted goods not meeting the stipulated acceptance tests.
“The opportunities exist but women feel that this is a very technical area and as a result, the auptak of tehse tenders has been very low,” explained Dr. John Ngeno, KPLC’s Supply Chain General Manager. He added that, “The few women who are getting the tenders perform very well by ensuring that they give the best to the company.”
KPLC has noted that of the three groups, women continue to lag behind in taking up the procurement opportunities. The company has set aside Ksh 3.7billion of its procurement budget during the current financial year for women, the youth, and people with disabilities. In the previous financial year, it allocated Ksh 1.4billion of its procurement budget to women, youth, and people with disabilities but only Ksh 480million was taken up.
To remedy the low uptake of tenders allocated for women, KPLC intends to partner with women groups to sensitize them on procurement procedures and create awareness of existing opportunities. Dr. Ngeno continued to explain that, “We are calling on groups to partner with Kenya Power in workshops and other trainings where we can share knowledge on e-procurement and opportunities that exist for them within the company.”
The company is also carrying out pre-bid conferences, where bidders are taken through the different tender requirements, processes for registration as suppliers, and uploading of documents on the procurement portal.