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Thread: Company sues over BEE issue.

  1. #1
    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Company sues over BEE issue.

    An interesting story here in the M&G.
    A Port Elizabeth company has taken the Coega Development Corporation (CDC) to court after losing out on a R91-million tender allegedly because it had no black partners.

    The Herald Online reported on Friday that Scribante Construction's tender for a infrastructure contract was R8-million cheaper than the one that had been awarded.

    In an urgent interdict application in the Port Elizabeth High Court on Thursday, Scribante asked Judge Dayalin Chetty to order that the project be put on hold until the outcome of a review of the CDC‘s procurement processes.

    Sakhisizwe Construction, GEM Earthworks and Big Eye Investments won the tender.

    Their R91-million contract was to provide infrastructure for phase two of the Coega industrial development zone. The Scribante Group contended its tender, for civil engineering and construction work, was R8-million cheaper and it should have
    been awarded the contract.

    In the interdict, it named the CDC as the first respondent and the three companies who won the tender as the second, third and fourth respondents.

    The CDC chose not to challenge the allegations in opposing papers, leaving the legal battle in the hands of the joint venture, represented by two advocates.

    Allan Nelson, for Scribante, told the court that although Scribante Construction had scored the highest points in terms of the CDC‘s own procurement process, the CDC changed the process by adding an extra requirement.

    This was called "empowerment intent" and was added without notifying applicants beforehand. This effectively disqualified Scribante Construction.

    Judgement was reserved. - Sapa
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  2. #2
    just me duncan drennan's Avatar
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    I think this will be an interesting one. Does anyone know whether any BEE related issues have been tested in court? At this stage the BEE codes are still only in their draft form (or am I wrong?). What law would the judge fall back on, EE and AA?

    Is it possible that the CDC will have a defense based on the sum total of the laws and the stated intent of the BEE Act?

    Can Scribante argue that changine the goalposts was not allowable in this circumstance?

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