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GACC Launches Open Contract Guide

The Ghana Anti Corruption Coalition (GACC), yesterday, held a dialogue with stakeholders on Open Contracting. The dialogue is expected to provide for a multi-stakeholders perspective on the effect of open contracting on the nation’s development, as well as outline strategies in promoting open contracting in the country.

The Head of Human Resource and Administration at the Public Procurement Authority (PPA) Ms. Yvonne Vanderpuye, said Government spent over 70% of its budget (after emoluments) on procurement of goods, works and services every year.


These, Miss Vanderpuye said, included the procurement of simple items like syringes for hospitals, books for school of roads, bridges, dams and the engagement of consultants for various services. She explained that the provision of all these were funded by the taxes and monies that belonged to all Ghanaians and foreign residents in the country.


She noted that according to an OECD Report 2003, transparent procurement procedures could contribute to a more efficient allocation of resources through increased competition, higher quality procurement and budgetary savings for government and tax payers. She added that efficient and transparent procedures could largely assist local suppliers to improve their competencies as they competed for public contracts, thereby making them more competitive.


"Transparent procurement procedures could also reduce bribery and corruption practices in Public Sector Procurement’’ Miss Vanderpuye indicated. According to Ms Vanderpuye, among every group of persons who handled funds and money, 5% each was completely incorruptible or was very corrupt while 90% are in the middle, yet to make a determination to be corrupt or otherwise.


She said this explained the need for systems to protect this 90% from being corrupted while they strategized to deal with the 5% corrupt cases, adding that the only way of ensuring the protection of this 90% was to strengthen institutions and for civil society to monitor all procurements.


Ms Florence Dennis, Executive Secretary of the Coalition said government spends between 60 to 70 per cent of its expenditure on procurement where contracts are signed with providers for the delivery of basic goods and services.


Ms Dennis said information to such contracts are either not made public or the contracts are poorly managed, preventing the citizenry from deriving benefits from these huge investments. Ms Dennis noted that open contracting sought to promote contract disclosure and participation in public contracting to trigger better contract performance and improved development outcomes.


Open contracting would help increase community participation in selecting and monitoring the procurement process to the point of contract award, and subsequently contract execution until project closure. Source: (Solomon K. W Tetteh & Josephine Bio)

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