Procurement board refutes corruption allegation claims on pharmaceuticals supply tender

The Central Procurement Board of Namibia (CPBN) has refuted allegations of corruption made by activist Michael Amushelolo last week for allegedly awarding an unadvertised N$451,8 million tender for the supply of pharmaceutical products to Fabupharm.

Amushelelo claimed on his social media pages that the awarding of the tender was facilitated by finance and public enterprises minister Ipumbu Shiimi.

In a media statement on Monday, CPBN spokesperson Johanna Kambala said the allegations are baseless
and is aimed at tarnishing the reputation and credibility of CPBN.

“CPBN wishes to refute Mr. Amushelelo’s allegations made towards CPBN are baseless and are only aimed at tarnishing the reputation and credibility of CPBN,” Kambala said.

She said that the juristic personality of the board cloths it with indispensable attributes of an autonomous body.

“The Board is headed by an independent board of directors insulating it against any form of external influence and interference,” she said.

Kambala added, “It is further important to note that the board is a creature of statutes and for all intent and purpose a state organ, thus subjecting itself to the constitutional values and ethos of dealing with all Namibians in a fair and equitable manner,”.

According to her the board is only guided by the provisions of the PPA and in the absence of specificity by common law or any other law of general application.


Kandali said during March 2022, the board received a procurement request from the Ministry of Health and Social Services.

She added that this was a procurement for the supply and delivery of pharmaceutical products and the recommended method of procurement by the health ministry which was “open to international bidding”.

She said that “This method of procurement is in accordance with section 30 of the Public Procurement Act (PPA) wherein the estimated value of the procurement exceeds the prescribed threshold (N$25 million for goods) or the goods or services are not available under competitive price and other conditions from more than one supplier in Namibia,” Kambala said.

She said that the board at its meeting held on 3 March 2022, instructed administration to inquire with the Medicines Regulatory Council through the Ministry of Health and Social Services if there are any Namibian manufacturers of pharmaceutical products.

“On the 4th March 2022, the board received a response indicating that only Fabupharm is a manufacturer in Namibia. Based on this response, the board took a decision in terms of Resolution CPBN- 03/19/2022 to restrict 41 items for procurement from Fabupharm,” she said.


According to her in terms of Section 36 (1) of the Public Procurement Act, the board or a public entity can procure goods or services from a single source without competition.

This provision is further amplified by Section 36 (2) (a) where only one supplier (in this case Fabupharm) being the only manufacturer of those items in Namibia and by implication finding no suitable alternative.

“In a nurture, it means that once the public entity adopts direct procurement as a method of procurement, there is no requirement either in law or for the practical reasons to advertise such a bid. The provisions of the PPA are very clear and unambiguous,” Kambala clarified.

She said that a final report dated 9 July 2023 was submitted by the Bids Evaluation Committee (BEC) to the board with recommendation that the bid be awarded to Fabupharm for 27 pharmaceutical items to the value of N$184, 9 million for a period of two years.

“The Board subsequently approved the BEC recommendation at its meeting held on 3rd August 2023 and a Notice of Selection of Award was issued on 28 March 2024,” she said.

“It is important to note that CPBN operates as an independent body and thus the allegations made by Mr. Amushelelo that Hon. Ipumbu Shiimi, Minister of Finance and Public Enterprises influenced the award of the bid in question is devoid of any truth,” Kambala added.

Kambala said that the CPBN will continue to uphold its values throughout its business dealings that are of value for money, integrity, transparency, accountability and responsiveness.

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