Addis Ababa to ban failed contractors, consultants

The Addis Ababa City Administration is set to ban and blacklist construction companies and consulting firms failed to deliver construction of different infrastructure projects on time.

“The direction of the city is clear. If you can’t deliver on time the projects, we will ban you and black list your company so that you will never work on construction projects in Addis Ababa,” said Takele Umma, Deputy Mayor of Addis Ababa City.

Reports show that from mega power projects to roads and health infrastructures, delays in construction completion period in Ethiopia has been costing the country billions of dollars every years.

The contracts of the ongoing construction projects the city administration is currently undertaking are between 200,000 birr to one billion birr, according to Engineer Yonas Ayalew, Addis Ababa City Construction Bureau head who in his presentation indicated that some construction and consulting companies are already banned and blacklisted.

“We hope that 70%-80% of the ongoing construction projects will be completed in the coming one to two month. It is better for the construction companies to complete the projects within this time frame than to be banned from doing such projects in the city. But if they don’t complete the only option to terminate the projects and give it to other companies to finish them,” Engineer Yonas said.

Out of the ongoing 1,264 construction projects financed by Addis Ababa City Administration only 463 projects are completed.

“We will inform the public the list of the construction companies we banned for that matter. If you can’t deliver, we will give the new university graduates to do the job on try and error basis, just like you have been doing,” he said, speaking to constructors and consultants this morning.

“This is the only solution we are going to follow in the city from now onwards,” he warned.

“We can’t afford to simply spend the taxpayers’ money for nothing. This is not the time to discuss while a building construction is stuck for three, four years. If terminated and black listed a construction company will not be allowed to do any construction in the city. We have revised our rules, accordingly,” he said indicated 75% to 80% of the capital budget of the city is allocated for construction of different infrastructures.

From now onwards all the construction projects in the city will be under management and supervision of Addis Ababa City Construction Bureau, according to Deputy Mayor Takele.

“We don’t question education bureau or health bureau and the like for the status of these projects any more. …It is not their duty to do construction. Their duty and mandate is to deal with the specific sector they are involved in,” he said.

Commenting on the companies licensed out of Addis Ababa but do projects in the City, Takele said: “We give priority to those companies registered in Addis Ababa, because we give priority for those who pay taxes for our city’s development.”

The reason the city administration didn’t launch new projects is to avoid project delays, which often is a result of compensation disputes with those who used to live on the project site areas, according to the Mayor Takele, who stated that the city is planning to finalize compensation issues before launching ay new construction projects.

This year the total budget of Addis Ababa City was $44.7 billion birr (around $1.6 billion). The Deputy Mayor indicated that it is better for us to disappoint the contractors and the consultants who always give excuses for their delays than to disappoint the public, who badly need the completion of those infrastructures.