Of all the consortia that participated in the bid opening for the sale of PHCN Companies, Southern Electricity was the only one that submitted multiple commercial bids for the same disco. This disclosure was made by the Chairman, Technical Committee of the National Council on Privatization (NCP), Mr. Atedo Peterside.
The governors of Delta, Edo and Ekiti States had at a joint news conference in Abuja vehemently rejected the choice of Vigeo Power Consortium as the preferred bidder for the Benin Disco and described the bid processes organized by the BPE as “highly fraudulent, not transparent and representing some racketeering interests”. Part of their contention was that Vigeo lacked the necessary technical competence and capacity to run the Benin Disco. Specifically, the Governor of Edo State, Adams Oshiomhole, had claimed that the process was rigged to favour Vigeo as Southern Electricity scored 898 points to Vigeo’s 847 points during the technical evaluation of the bids and ought to have emerged the preferred bidder.
However, Peterside disclosed that Southern Electricity’s envelope was discovered to have contained two different commercial bids, both of which were signed by one Mr. Matthew Edevbie. He said: “The first bid was dubbed the ‘primary bid’, while the other was dubbed an ‘alternate bid’. This was a clear contravention of the RFP. While reaffirming that the entire transaction followed due process and was governed by the provisions of the RFP, Peterside noted that close to 90 per cent of the seven members that make up Southern Electricity comprises private sector companies that are not owned directly or indirectly by the governments of Delta, Edo, Ekiti and Ondo States.