Minister Deepens Transparency In Procurement Sector

Minister of State in-charge of Public Procurement, Sarah Adwoa Sarfo, has launched a website aimed at promoting transparency in public procurement in the country.

The website of the Ministry of Public Procurement is intended to create the platform for sharing information on government’s procurement policies, strategies, programmes and projects.

Speaking at the launch on Thursday in Accra, Ms. Sarfo, explained that the website would help meet the needs of the public and promote transparency.

According to the minister, who doubles as Member of Parliament (MP) for Dome/Kwabenya Constituency in the Greater Accra Region, the Procurement Ministry has the mandate to improve relations between government and its suppliers, contractors, consultants and service providers to build an atmosphere of trust, transparency and integrity.

She added “our target is to help Ghana achieve openness, fairness, integrity and value for money that will enable us achieve value for money in all our public procurements.”

She stressed the need to develop a website that can assist the ministry easily disseminate relevant procurement information to the general public.

She reiterated that steps taken by the Ministry of Public Procurement and the Public Procurement Authority (PPA) under the current Akufo-Addo administration had saved Ghana some GH¢800 million in 2017 alone, adding that efforts must be made to remove the “shadiness” that characterize public procurement in the country over the years.

Chief of Staff, Akosua Frema Osei-Opare, who officially launched the website, praised Ms. Sarfo for taking such an initiative to open up the procurement sector to the general public to promote transparency and accountability.

According to her, past experience shows clearly how sole-sourcing and restrictive tendering became the norm.

She, therefore, urged the Ministry to continue to reach out to more people to make them understand its operations and called for regular monitoring and evaluation of the ministry’s policies and programmes.

In Ghana, public procurement constitutes about 65 percent of national budgetary allocations.

Minister of Communications, Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, underscored the need to use technology to remove the “opaqueness” that facilitates corruption in the sector.

She urged Ms. Sarfo to take further steps to ensure transparency and demystify procurement so that the sector would not continue to be an avenue for corruption.

Meanwhile, Ghana Country Manager of the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply (CIPS), Stella Aku Addo, has stated that CIPS would continue to support the Procurement Ministry in the fight against corruption to achieve President Akufo-Addo’s vision for the sector.