The first batch of defunct electronic-voting machines are due to be collected in Wexford this morning and the winning bidder has revealed how he secured the devices. Managing director of Co Offaly-based KMK Metals Recycling, Kurt Kyck, claims his bid of just over €70,000 was unique in that KMK was willing to buy the machines. He doesn’t believe the other six applicants offered to pay the Government to take the €50 million machines away. While listening to an interview with Minister for the Environment Phil Hogan, Mr Kyck said he realised the other bidders “would have charged the Government to take them”.
During the interview, said Mr Kyck, Mr Hogan “confirmed that our tender was the only one that had a positive outcome for the Government”. The businessman also revealed he had factored in the publicity that would arise from the contract. “We calculated it in as an additional benefit,” he said.
Mr Kyck was one of the few Irish residents with experience of the machines, having used one when they were piloted in the 2002 general election in Co Meath. With KMK recycling about 18,000 tonnes of material every year, the e-voting contract of 300 tonnes is not one of the company’s largest batches but it has generated the most interest, he said. A total of 7,500 e-voting machines are stored at 14 locations from Donegal to Kerry.