By Staff Reporters

Maseru, Jan 30 (The Night’s Watch) – Minister of Gender, Youth, Sports and Recreation, Dr Mahali Phamotse, has been charged with corruption relating to the Ministry of Education and Training’s tender for the printing, supply and delivery of primary schools’ textbooks.

The Directorate on Corruption and Economic Offences (DCEO) this week laid out charges ranging from abuse of position to influence tender evaluation process, to contravening the Prevention of Corruption and economic Offences Act of 1999.

The charges arose from Phamotse’s tenure as Minister of Education and Training between 2015 and 2016.

According to the charge sheet, between May 2015 and December 2015, Phamotse working together with ‘Mapaseka Kolotsane and Ratsiu Majara who were the ministry of education’s Principal Secretary (PS) and deputy PS respectively, in furtherance of a shared common intention, did intentionally meddle in the procurement process, for the purpose of obtaining undue advantage of two local companies, Epic printers and Molumeli (Pty) Ltd.

The trio allegedly abused their positions and influenced an amendment to the years of experience in the tender bid document and influenced the bid evaluation process by instructing the evaluation team to hold a second evaluation, contrary to the prescripts of the Public Procurement Regulations of 2007.

“Now therefore the accused are guilty of contravening section 21(3) read with section 2, 20, 32, 34 and 43(2) of the Prevention of Corruption and Economic Offences Act No. 5 of 1999 (as amended by Act No.8 of 2006,” reads the charge sheet.

Phamotse was released on free bail at the Maseru magistrate court on Tuesday. She will appear in court again on February 21. NW

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