Thursday, October 28, 2021

“All my actions were above Board” Jacob Sesinyi

I have chosen to write to yourselves to correct certain blatant and manifest untruths contained in your last week article entitled “BOT50 IN A MULTI MILLION TENDER ROW”, which makes various references to myself and which article also deliberately distorts and withholds certain facts, in order to support the iniquitous narrative of possible misconduct on my part.

I can confirm that I own and operate a communication consultancy that amongst other things develops and delivers communication solutions and events for various clients both locally and internationally. This consultancy has been in operation for almost a decade.

A significant number of solutions to our clients are delivered either on our own or in partnership with various partners both locally and internationally. We are therefore always on the look out for potential partners that can help us deliver to our clients’ needs either on a project by project basis or on a more permanent basis. It is in this context that we approached VWV for potential partnership. I can advise that at the same time, we approached other potential partners in other parts of the world. As a result, when VWV reverted advising that they were not able to partner with us, we happily moved on. We harbor no grudge or resentment towards VWV whatsoever.

I hasten to point out that upon being approached for BOT50, I immediately declared my business to both the Chairman and the appointing authority. Both encouraged me to take up the appointment nonetheless, and in consideration of my knowledge, skills and experience that BOT50 and the country requires.

I would like to state for the record, that neither myself nor my company have expressed any interest or tendered for any of the BOT50 jobs or tenders.

It is a pity that your article referred to herein relied heavily on an email quoted in court papers relating to a matter whose merits have not been dealt with. That matter was dismissed by the High Court of Botswana with costs awarded to the respondents. I therefore find it rather mischievous, smack of bad faith and lack of sound journalistic practices to depend on a one sided set of court papers.

Notwithstanding, I advise that the email was written more that a year ago, before the country even celebrated 49 years of independence, and had absolutely nothing to do with the tender that The Dialogue Group was complaining about. I was at the time

not a member of the BOT 50 Organizing Committee, and never even knew I would be approached to be appointed to the committee. It is common knowledge that even the procurement and tender processes in relation to the Opening Ceremony of the 50th Anniversary celebrations in 2016 had not started!

Perhaps most importantly though, following Terry Behan’s response (which you have quoted) to my aforesaid email, I replied thereto in the following terms…”Thanks for the note, well appreciated. May I know if your current partnership does allow you to collaborate with any other party in Botswana on a project by project basis There are projects that I am working very hard on which I am confident that collaborating with you will be a smooth sail. However, I am also aware of the sensitivity if your current partners were also to bid for them, so I guess it is a real catch 22 situation”

Terry Behan and yourselves have elected, for reasons best known to yourselves, to omit my above response in the sequence of correspondence exchanged between Terry Behan and myself, and presumably this is because the afore going does not support the supposedly ongoing rancor or resentment on my part at the failed collaboration with Terry Behan

As will be seen from the aforegoing, my previously desired and sought collaboration with Terry Behan was declined by Terry Beham on behalf of VWV (for reasons stated in Terry Behan’s email) and it never subsequently materialized. As such, it is not clear to me as to the interest which both the Dialogue Group and yourselves feel I ought to have declared.

With reference to the failed bid by the Dialogue Group, I can do nothingmore than to refer to the Dialogue Group’s self-confessed “error” in submitting an invalid Tax Clearance Certificate (which fact is also admitted by their attorneys in correspondence dated 15th March, 2016 which is Annexure “KPM 7” of their court papers) during an urgent application to the high Court which was dismissed with costs within few hours. It is this admitted error on their part, and nothing done or purported to be done by myself which explains their unsuccessful bid.

As was stated by the Coordinator of the 50th Anniversary committee in her letter to the Dialogue Group Attorneys dated 18th March 2016, “The Dialogue Group cannot, and should not, have expected the evaluating panel the pull out the valid certificate from their previous Expression of Interest submission and add it to the Tender submission on their behalf. This would have been tantamount to tempering with your client submission and therefore iniquitous and prejudicial to their bidders, and act we are convinced your client would have objected to if it were another bidder. The Dialogue Group, like all other bidders, simply had to comply with the requirement of the invitation to tender to submit a valid Tax Clearance Certificate on their own.”

By way of conclusion, I trust that you are aware that the litigation to which you alluded to in the aforementioned article was concluded on Thursday, 31st march 2016 at 1700hrs and that their urgent application was dismissed with costs, a fact you decided to omit in your article.

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