By Emma Ujah, Abuja Bureau Chief

ABUJA—Era of excessive profit from Federal Government’s contracts is over, Director-General of Bureau of Public Procurement, BPP, Mamman Ahmadu, has said.

He spoke at a capacity building workshop on public procurement for procurement officers in the directorate cadre in Abuja, yesterday.

He said:  “You cannot force people to do things below cost.  What you can do is to create a very competitive environment in which making excessive profit is eliminated.

“If all those who tender for jobs are willing to key into it, then what we do is to select the best tender at all times.”

The BPP, he added, had been harmonising existing government policies and practices by regulating, setting standards  and developing the legal framework and professional capacity for public procurement in Nigeria with the aim of building and sustaining an efficient country procurement system that meets international best practices.

He said:  “One of the reasons for our gathering here today is to exchange ideas with procurement officers, who are in the frontline of public procurement, on lessons learned in the previous year and to develop new skills that will enhance the implementation and performance of the 2018 Budget.

“The Bureau, in our drive for innovation in running a sustainable public procurement, is leveraging on IT to deploy tools to fight corruption and to improve the public procurement process.

“It just recently deployed an upgraded version of National Database of Contractors, which is integrated with other sister government agencies, such as Corporate Affairs Commission, CAC; Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS; Industrial Training Fund, ITF; Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund, NSITF, and National Pension Commission, PenCom, for real-time data exchange.

“This data exchange is aimed at fighting corruption by eliminating the use of falsified documents in the bidding process. The exchange of data also aims to eradicate the patronage of portfolio companies, prevent companies from providing false claims in their submissions to gain undue competitive advantage.

“For instance, the number of personnel a company claims to employ in a bid to secure a contract  should match the number making contributions in Pensions,ITF and Employee compensation  scheme.”

BPP, the D-G said, had also deployed a National  Open Contracting Portal called NOCOPO “to ensure   that public procurement information was publicly available, with a view to ensuring that all stakeholders can engage with the entire procurement cycle.

“This will enable interested parties, civil society organisations and private sector to monitor every contract awarded by the Federal Government to ensure that they are delivered as expected.”

‘’This will also be an avenue to curb instances of project abandonment, as contractors that are bad performers will be easily detected through the portal.

Ahmadu expressed the bureau’s commitment to working with all the MDAs to

deepen the public procurement process and achieve success in the procurement reform of the nation.

 

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