By Hugo Idiogor
Bureau for Public Procurement, BPP, has faulted the Federal Ministry of Transport and the Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA, for refusing to adhere to laid down rules in the award of the N30 billion contract for the dredging of Calabar Port.
BPP’s Director-General, Mr. Emeka Ezeh, said in an inter-view in Abuja that the fight against corruption in the public sector would not succeed if ministries, government agencies and parastatals were allowed to flout the anti-graft laws in the award of contracts.
Ezeh vowed that the bureau would curb the excesses of the transport ministry and NPA, adding, “by the time we finish with them, the outcome will serve as an eye-opener to those who do not have laid down rules before embarking on any advertisement for bidders to bid for contracts.”
According to him, the bureau will insist on the nine steps in public procurement process be strictly followed before a Certificate of No Objec-tion would be issued to any company.
Ezeh added that the bureau had been under pressure to favour a particular company but assured that BPP would not succumb to any form of inducement.
He said: “I have been under pressure to favour some contractors in the Calabar dredging contract. But I have been adamant, insisting that the right thing should be done.”
On what the bureau would do if the ministry and NPA fail to rectify the anomaly, Ezeh said: “The plan of my office is possibly to cancel the entire bidding exercise. I will stop at nothing but work according to Act 54 Section 2b of the BPP Act.
“I am the most hated chief executive in Nigeria because I blocked the holes created by government officials in ministries and parastatals.
“I stopped N218.7 billion from being siphoned by some unscrupulous government officials in the 2010 Appropriation Bill.”