The Public Procurement and Asset Disposal Board’s (PPADB) Executive Chairperson, Elijah Motshedi, has revealed that as an endeavour to ensure rigid procurement compliance, his organization will in the 2020|21 financial year undertake routine assessment of at least six (6) parastatals.
Motshedi made the revelations this week during the PPADB annual media briefing in Gaborone, saying the assessment of parastatals will help to tighten compliance screws.
The six chosen parastatals to be assessed for compliance measures, according to Motshedi include, University of Botswana, Botswana Power Corporation, Botswana Unified Revenue Service, Botswana National Sports Commission and Sir Ketumile Masire Teaching Hospital.
“Part of our strategic plan implementation is to increase in the number of audits we do and this has unfolded to evaluating the parastatals. It is all about determining their level of compliance with the PPADB Act. In addition, we will continue vet their procedures,” Motshedi buttressed.
Asked on what prompted them to select the six to be monitored this year, he said the criteria was to evaluate both high and low spending parastatals so as to measure effectively.
“Some of these selected parastatals such as UB, BPC and WUC are obviously top spenders and they do a lot of procurement owing to the large capacity of projects that are undertaken by them on normal basis. Others such as BNSC spend less and this will help us to vary them,” he added.
PPADB undertakes the assessment of state-owned enterprises following the call by Minister of Finance Dr Thapelo Matsheka during 2020\21 for a review of parastatals. He said there were a lot of government-owned parastatals, with some not performing well while others are facing deep corruption claims.
Talking to the challenges bedeviling PPADB, Motshedi said there were plenty of obstacles that they are facing, citing amongst them complaints that arise from awarding of tenders.
He said a total of 118 complaints were received by PPADBD during the first half of 2019/20 fiscal year, 60 from works, 21 supplies and 37 from services with 5% lodged against the Board. The complaints, he said, impact negatively on the implementation of awarded tender projects, adding that some of the complaints have been dragged before courts hence further delaying project implementation.
The Ministry of Transport and Communications has logged the highest number of complaints with 31 cases followed by the Ministry of Defence, Justice and Security with 15 cases in the period. In addition, PPADB says, there is need for procuring entities to improve adherence to Procurement Plans for timely implementation of the projects to be carried away.
“Delays in the initiation of procurement by the procuring entities, evaluation of tenders and contracting including poor scoping and or inadequate specifications remain a big concern of the Board as they discredit the procurement system,” Motshedi underscored in PPADB 2018 report.
PPADB in 2018|19 financial year awarded tenders worth P5, 726 billion to different ministries. Motshedi said focus will be put on the price grade going forward, decrying that government has been charged high for goods and services by some of suppliers.
PPADB reiterates its stance to continue maintaining the Price Guide which is regularly updated and maintained on annual basis though some of the bidders ignore its contents to extent of overpricing.
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