PPRA Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Ramadhan Mlinga
The Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) has urged the general public to cooperate in preventing corrupt and fraudulent practices in public procurement and breaches of public procurement law and procedures in order to bring to an end loss of public funds.
The authority says given the current level of understanding and awareness among the general public, they know what is happening in public procurement and therefore are key shareholders in smoking out corruption and fraud in public procurement.
PPRA Chief Executive Officer Dr. Ramadhan Mlinga said this yesterday at a press conference when introducing the PPRA’s educational program that will be aired through various TV stations. It will educate the general public on PPRA’s responsibilities in monitoring and ensuring compliance with public procurement law and procedures, including operations of the procurement sector in general.
The program whose theme is PPRA partnership with public is funded by the African Development Bank to the tune of Tsh320 million and will be aired for about eight months starting yesterday. Within the period, the public would be able to understand about PPRA and its responsibilities, to instill a sense of what is expected of public procurement in general.
Being an important stakeholder in public procurement, the public will also be educated on procurement policy which is under preparation, especially on the right of bidders to complain if they are not satisfied with the procurement process. There is also a provision on award of tender, procedures of procurement of common use items and services, and the management of procurement and supplies professionals.
“So, this program will educate the public about the importance of this sector and encourage the public to cooperate with PPRA in ensuring that the use of taxpayers’ money through procurement realizes value for money,” the CEO emphasized.
Commenting on important issues covered in the programme, Dr. Mlinga said that the program will educate the public about PPRA’s responsibilities and its contributions in saving public funds that would otherwise be lost through breaches of procurement law and procedures.
“This program will inform the public about achievements made by PPRA since its establishment in 2005 and the challenges it has encountered in implementing its responsibilities,” he stated.
He said the program will also educate the public about the challenges in implementing the Public Procurement Act of 2004, weakness that were observed and which contributed to the repeal of the Act and the enactment of the new Public Procurement Act of 2011.
Commenting on the current situation in the public procurement sector, the PPRA’s board chairman retired Judge Thomas Mihayo said that despite efforts undertaken by the authority, there were still instances of corruption especially in district councils and in big organizations. However, he said, one of the challenges was due to lack of funds to fully implement the PPRA’s plans.
“We had planned to cover 80 percent of needs. However we have covered much less. We are still moving and we hope that if the public will learn more through this new program, we believe they will be informed on how best public funds can be managed,” he said.
The establishment of Public Procurement Act was part of strategies to improve the procurement sector in the country with the objective of introducing a public procurement system that is transparent, competitive and which can guarantee value for money and accountability in public procurement.