Of Coffee With The Tender Swindler

If you were having coffee with me, I would welcome you to my tangle of words and apologise that due to the constant electricity outages, I cant offer you an ice cold refreshment to cool you down from the sweltering heat… Temperatures are 30 degrees Celsius and risingHello Global Warming.

jacaranda  lined avenue Zimbabwe
Jacaranda tree lined avenue

Its that time of the year again… the Jacaranda trees are starting to bloom – for the examination classes, its crunch time. Can we now put up Christmas Décor or its too soon?

Rasta Santa

If you were having coffee with me, I would tell you about a rise in next generation of entrepreneurs or rather tenderpreneurs, who make their fortunes in the lucrative business of government tenders, usually by opening inner doors in the government corridors of power. For some bureaucratic reason, the government requires tenders to get anything done, from getting the stationery in a police station to rehabilitating the roads that connect up the country. This process is supposed to ensure transparency and accountability in government procurement, ensuring that due process is carried and tenders awarded to deserving contractors.

Oddest thing is that this process feeds into the ugly underbelly of greed and corruption – where the contractors who win tenders, the tenderpreneurs, are more of middlemen who usually grease palms with kick backs and use their connections to gain the upper hand -subcontracting others to deliver supplies and or services at bloated up prices while they pocket the change. Sometimes they dont deliver at all, they just laugh all the way to the bank and that is that.

Payments to government contractors have also been cited as a contributor to the parallel market. Since the funds are disbursed in the local Zimbabwe dollar, unscrupulous contractors would then float their ZWL balances to the black market to buy United States Dollars. Zim government accounts for 70% of the payments done in this teapot shaped country.

For the past 2 months the run away black market rate for the USD has been curbed and the government says the measures it has taken such as introducing the Mosi Oa Tunya Gold coin is what is stabilising the rate. Government also suspended its payments to contractors to weed out those that had inflated contracts – and this may be a huge contributing factor as to why the illegal Money Changers who are usually flash with cash offering “high rates” for the USD haven’t been as solvent.

Money changers
money changer

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you about some computers the government wanted to acquire. See, Parliament wanted to get some flashy new computers which can handle all the important government stuff that they do… The tender which has gotten cancelled was going to see them get machines for around USD$9000 a pop.

Laptop Tender cancellation Zimbabwe

Apparently, the deal was only cancelled by Treasury after a losing bidder unearthed the scam, exposing Parliament for having approved the inflated tender. Looks like it’s a cut-throat world in the government tender business. Check out a viral picture of what is said to be the office for one of the companies that was set to gross a cool $1.6 millionYeah doesn’t look like the sort of place to stock 9K dollar laptops.

Blinart Investments
Blinart Investments

What sort of laptops were they even looking for? Usually the most expensive laptops are gaming laptops that have tricked out specs so one can do benchmark gaming—I would be very worried if in parliament they spent their time playing video games. I also highly doubt that they would need to do any graphic designing, video editing and rendering; even if they did, could still get respectable machines at a fraction of that price. Who is in charge of deciding what sort of laptops Parliament should get?

FYI this article was typed up on a $300 laptop 💻

If you were having coffee with me, I would tell you that the Artemis Launch has been delayed,… again. The spacecraft was rolled back from the launchpad and secured inside NASA Kennedy’s Vehicle Assembly Building to ride out Hurricane Ian.  I hope you all were safe in Florida.

Upon assessment of the impact from Hurricane Ian its been determined that there was no damage to Artemis I and so NASA now focusing on a November 12-27 launch window.

Incidentally Zimbabwe’s first satellite — ZimSat-1 — is set to reach the International Space Station (ISS) in October prior to its launch into orbit in November from the Kibo module of the ISS. This was after a two-month delay due to unfavourable weather.  Not exactly sure what its supposed to do, but according to the unflatteringly named Zimbabwe National Geospatial and Space Agency (ZINGSA), “It is envisaged that the satellite will immensely enhance the country’s mineral exploration, monitoring of environmental hazards and mapping of human settlements, among other capabilities.”

Colour me curious, whats the approximate value of your laptop? Whats been happening in your neck of the woods?

~B

coffee-with-the-tender-swindler

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13 Comments

  1. I splurged on a computer last year, as the current one kept freezing up and/or rebooting randomly. I ended up getting a $900 and figure it should last me close to 10 years. That’s the plan anyway. Not a gaming laptop, just lots of harddrive space and ram. I want to be able to have 10 chrome tabs open all at once plus some other programs and not have to worry about slowing down.

    9K for a computer is more than I pay for my cars!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The way Chrome is such a hog for all the resources and ram…..😂😂

      My current machine can handle quite a fair number of tabs on Chrome without any noticeable change and still run several other programs ( I usually have Corel and Photoshop running -and of course Microsoft Office and occassionally a video rendering programe while playing spotify because hey we need music in the background)
      As for hard-drive I noticed a significant change in speed and perfomance when I changed my hard drive to the new SSD ones although the prices are still somewhat restrictive so had to settle for a small SSD harddrive but maintained my initial hard drive as a back/external USB drive…

      9K for a computer it better come with four wheels, electric engine and able to do 0-50mph in at least 60 seconds ha!
      ~B

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Those blooming trees are gorgeous!!

    My laptop is 5-6 years old now, so probably not worth much anymore, but was purchased for approximately $1500, and has experienced a few upgrades (more RAM + larger hard drive) along the way.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for visiting ^_^
      Those Jacaranda trees make the street quite scenic for a second you can almost forgot everything else going on 💜💜💜

      When you have a good processor, upgrading the ram and drive can breathe new life into… yours sounds like it was quite flagship half a decade back haha

      ~B

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I recently purchased a laptop worth $600, I had to upgrade to get better processing power for my school software. Had it not been that my old machine was starting to freeze I would have been perfectly happy with my 4 year old HP core i3.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. According to the internet a laptop should be ok for about 5 years and then software and resource upgrades will need more ram, more space and faster processors.

      ~B

      Like

    1. Thank you for visiting Michelle.
      The Jacaranda trees in full bloom are a sight for saw eyes making everything look picturesque for a lil bit ^_^
      hahaha sometimes its the great space race is really some giant scam, anyway let me drink my coffee
      ~B

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I want to say I’ll stop checking up on it and would not care 2 cents if I never hear from or about it 🤡 but nope I’ll be here waiting hoping… 🤣
      Starcrossed ship 🚀
      ~B

      Liked by 1 person

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