Nigerian Government sensitises agencies on procurement laws

Taiwo Ojedele, Lagos

In a bid to ensure effective delivery and implementation of the 2016 Budget, the Nigerian government has reiterated its commitment to probity, accountability and value for money in all procurement matters.

Secretary to the Government of the Federation Babachir Lawal said this at the opening of a retreat organised by the Bureau for Public Procurement, BPP, for Chief Executive Officers of government agencies and parastatals in Lagos.

Mr. Babachir Lawal who was represented by a Permanent Secretary, Muhammed Bukar emphasised the need to increase awareness amongst critical stakeholders on their responsibilities in the implementation of the Public Procurement Act, 2007.

The government scribe stressed the need for all agencies and parastatals to adhere strictly to the new threshold for procurement stipulated by government.

“As you are aware government has recently reviewed the threshold for agencies to approve contracts. In particular the threshold for the execution of capital projects has been reviewed from one billion naira to five hundred million naira. This review does not call for the splitting of contracts to beat the thresholds. Agencies or personnel who indulge in such acts will be made to face the full wrath of the law”.

In his remark at the event, the acting Director General of the BPP, Ahmed Abdul said that the retreat was organised to get the heads of government agencies and parastatals more acquainted with the procurement law for effective implementation of the 2016 Budget.

According to him, the retreat will further help reduce infractions and ensure speedy execution of projects highlighted in the 2016 Budget.

Chairman of the House of Representatives committee on procurement Doctor Olusola Oke, also called for a judicious and transparent use of resources of government, noting that there is a human rights angle to public procurement.

“The resources we appropriate annually are garnered across the length and breadth of Nigeria, when the BPP act says you should advertise, it is not to deny any Nigerian be it individual or corporate body the right to be patronized, you have to ensure that the resources put in your care are spent judiciously and in a transparent manner”, he told the Chief Executives.

The retreat which is themed, the Public procurement Act (PPA), 2007: An effective tool to delivering more for less, is billed to ensure that all possible leakages and abuses in the procurement process are blocked as part of efforts to stamp out corruption in Public service.