MPs Receive Training On Procurement

Sarah Adwoa Safo

The Ministry for Public Procurement has
organized a workshop on public procurement for leadership of parliament and
selected parliamentary committees to help enhance parliamentary oversight on
public procurement.

Opening the workshop which was held at the Capital View Hotel in
Koforidua, the Minister in charge of Public Procurement at the Office of the
President, Sarah Adwoa Safo said procurement in Ghana accounts for 70% of
government expenditure which represents a chunk of the country’s total GDP
stressing that conflict of interest, corruption, collusion and fraud in public
procurement must be reduced to the barest minimum.

According to the minister, Members of Parliament play a crucial
role in ensuring corruption free public procurement regime through its
oversight functions therefore there is the need to build the capacity of
legislators in the area of public procurement.

“Good public procurement practices, laws, regulations have a
direct impact on the successful delivery of government projects and public
services. It ensures sound public financial management by delivering value for
money in government expenditure. It also encourages private sector growth and
investment and reduces corruption,” she said.

She said her office in collaboration with the Public Procurement
Authority (PPA) is working to compile a database of the past performance
records of all contractors, suppliers, and service providers to evaluate their
contractual performance abilities and financial capabilities

She added that from the data collected contractors, suppliers and
service providers will be rated adding that worse performers will be
blacklisted and suspended or debarred for a specified period.

The First Deputy Speaker, 
the minority leader and minority chief whip; Joseph Osei-Owusu, Haruna
Iddrisu and Mohammed Mubarak Muntaka respectively were all unanimous by saying
that when it comes to matters of public procurement, it should be on
competitive basis and on merit and not on partisan basis through sole-sourcing

The First Deputy Speaker reminded government officials that the
Right To Information (RTI) Act is here so those in charge of procurement should
be wary that the prying eyes of the media would be on them to expose corrupt
practices in procurement matters.

He also said the electorates are becoming more informed and
demanding in terms of transparency and accountability so government officials
could be forced through demonstrations and petitions to force public officers
to disclose details of public procurement contracts.

He therefore urged public officials to protect their integrity in public procurement matters by being open and accountable.

By Thomas Fosu Jnr

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