Xaris vows to oppose Arandis Power court application

Discussions to finalise a power purchase agreement between newsmakers NamPower and Xaris continue unhindered while the project’s backers remain on tenterhooks following a recent court bid by Arandis Power to stop the project.
It now appears that Xaris is to give Arandis Power a run for its money, with Xaris Managing Director Hennie Steyn this week stating his intention of opposing the court application brought against it by Arandis Power.
After the power purchase agreement between Xaris and NamPower was given the green light, the favoured tenderer for the stop-gap power station in Walvis Bay seems unfazed by Arandis Power’s attempt to block the tender.
This the Economist established when it recently asked Xaris Managing Director, Hennie Steyn what is going to happen following the bid by the Arandis crowd to stop the project. Said Steyn in response, “the Xaris project team will continue to meet with NamPower to finalise the agreements based on the request from NamPower to do so.”
Steyn continued, “Xaris will continue with its work on the project based on detailed legal advice which confirmed that the decision of NamPower to approve Xaris as the preferred bidder and that the subsequent decision of NamPower’s board to award the contract to Xaris, are valid and binding unless set aside by a competent court. Xaris will therefore defend the urgent application brought by Arandis.”
Nampower through its spokesperson Ambassador Monica Nashandi had still not responded to a query made by the Economist about future events following the court bid by Arandis Power.
Arandis Power, who was identified as the second runner up to the controversial 120mW power project’s Managing Director Ezio Vernetti previously told the Economist that his outfit had lodged an affidavit in an effort to stop the stop-gap project, which he had claimed was unfairly awarded to Xaris by Nampower. Said Vernetti, “we sustain that the tender NPWR/2014/22 was not fairly evaluated and that in fact Xaris Energy should have been disqualified and not nominated Preferred Bidder. We have lodged an affidavit to that effect with the High Court of which a copy will presumably be made available to you upon request to the court itself.
Added Vernetti, “We are hoping to set aside the decision to proceed with Xaris as the Preferred Bidder in view of concluding negotiations for the construction of the power plant. Should the Court concur with our submissions, then the result could lead, either to negotiations being commenced with Arandis Power as the Reserve Bidder or alternatively the tender being cancelled.”
As negotiations between the two entities continue, Nampower and Xaris are expected to finalise the power purchase agreement which will still need the approval of the relevant regulatory bodies. This was, according to Xaris Managing Director, Steyn, necessary to bring about a speedy financial close without stating a target date or a timeline for the finalisation of the agreement.

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