General News of Wed, 14 Mar 201816
Speak to Finance Ministry, not me! Adwoa Safo parries GHC28.8m MASLOC queries
The Procurement Minister says queries about a GH¢28.8 million contract awarded by Microfinance and Small Loans Centre (MASLOC) through sole sourcing must be directed to the Finance Ministry and not her.
Sarah Adwoa Safo said, her office is only responsible for advising the government on procurement policies and strategies.
She told the Speaker on the floor of Parliament Wednesday that the Finance Ministry is in a better position to speak on the matter.
The Deputy Majority Leader said the term Minister as stated in the amended Public Procurement Authority Act 914, was in reference to the Finance Minister and not the Procurement Minister.
“Again, the legal framework currently does not authorize my office or any other office to conduct centralised procurement,” she added.
Adwoa Safo was answering questions filed by the Ashaiman legislator, Ernest Norgbey, who claims a contract awarded to a private firm, Dextro-Impex Company Limited, did not go through competitive bidding.
Related: Adwoa Safo to answer for ¢28.8m MASLOC sole-sourced contract
He alleges that there were no grounds to have sole-sourced a contract for the supply of 1800 second-hand vehicles for the government, describing the deal as illegal.
Mr Norgbey also alleges that the decision by the MASLOC CEO, Stephen Amoah, to give the supplying company a letter of comfort to allow them to raise funds to execute the contract, was out of place.
“At the time that these contracts were signed there was no board in place but the CEO took it upon himself to do all these things.
“We keep talking about sole sourcing and fighting corruption but if one CEO can take the decision to award a contract worth GH¢28.8 million, then there is every cause to worry,” he said.
Mr Norgbey said although Section 40 of the PPA Act allows for such a transaction, the said contract does not qualify.
According to him, the Act is against public officers procuring second-hand vehicles for any state entity.
But the Proceument Minister said, “every Ministry/Agency has the mandate to undertake its procurement,” and she does not have the mandate and locus to answer questions on procurement.