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Procurement law needs amendment - Adwoa Safo

The Deputy Majority Leader in Parliament, Sarah Adwoa Safo, has called for the amendment of the current procurement law to empower the Public Procurement Authority (PPA) to conduct value for money audit.

“I think that the law, as it currently is, should be amended to give authority to the PPA to go into contracts and do a value for money audit,” she told the B&FT in an interview.

The sixth Parliament passed the Public Procurement (Amendment) Act, 2003 (Act 914). The amended law adjusted existing hierarchical structures within the public procurement system which caused undue delays and provided for decentralized procurement.

To reduce excessive administrative costs and enhance efficiency, all tender review boards, with the exception of the Central Tender Review Boards, have been dissolved.

Ms. Safo, who is also the Member of Parliament for Dome-Kwabenya, said: “We have many of our contracts that have been inflated because we don’t do the value for money audit.

Before Parliament gives approval at the committee level, we have to discuss all these issues. Then there is an independent body that it is referred to. If the bidders are quoting the price of blackboards and chairs, among others, we then ask the PPA to give us an audit of the prices, to ensure that they are giving us the right figures. That then, will form the basis for our debate in Parliament.

The Speaker has the power to refer it to the Committee if the prices are outrageous, so that the prices come down so it makes sense to every Ghanaian. That will ensure that monies spent on certain infrastructural development actually reflect the true value of what we ought to have.”

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, in his maiden State of the Nation Address said that: “My government will enforce the procurement law. We will insist on open and competitive bidding for power capacity procurement.”

This promise, according to the Deputy Majority Leader, is commendable by the President and she reckons it will help restore integrity and accountability in the procurement system.

The Deputy Majority Leader who is also the Member of Parliament for Dome-Kwabenya also disclosed that the ruling government will push through what they describe as “green procurement”--where 30% of all government procurement will be reserved for women and companies owned by people with disability.

“Unless there is a government policy and strategy that we are giving this to our locals, we have also said in our manifesto, that 70% will also go to local contractors, so that we build their capacity.”she added

Source: b&ft.com

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