Professionalise Procurement to Curb Corruption, Institute Tells FG

By Funmilayo Adeyemi

The Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply Management of Nigeria (CIPSMN) has urged the Federal Government, especially the Head of Service (HOS)  to professionalise procurement functions in civil service to curb corruption.

The North Central Coordinator of the institute, Mr Abdul Mamman said this at the 2022 Group B Induction Ceremony of new members in Abuja on Friday.

Mamman said that professionalising procurement would make people opened to the vagaries and complexities of procurement and understand the technicalities and as such when challenged, they would be able to offer services effectively in line with international best practices.

“In Nigeria today, there are people who are doing this particular job by way of  “man-know-man’’ and they never understand the fundamentals of dignity involved than carries the integrity in procurement.

CIPSMN officials at the Group B Induction Ceremony in Abuja on Friday

 

“And, there have been several calls that procurement activities in Nigeria are areas where much of the corrupt activities are done.

“But as it is, most of our members who are professionals are usually not allowed to do what they are to do but rather those who are first to get it are not qualified,” he said.

According to him, the ethics of the profession is taught and endangered in the practice of procurement and supply chain in Nigeria.

“As at the time we wanted to carry out this reform, we decided to domesticate the law as obtained in other countries and other spheres.

“But the first chapter of that law that has to do with national council of public procurement has been violated; it has not been inaugurated till this moment.

“It is only the current administration that tried in 2017 to inaugurate the council, the council is supposed to be a board to the Bureau of Public procurement (BPP)  as the BPP is supposed to be a secretariat.

” But now it has no board overseeing their activities which is inimical to utilising the content of that particular law which was passed in 2007 by the government of late President Umaru Yaradua ,” he said.

According to him, as a result of that, what we have today is that people tend to believe there are no sanctions that can be meted on them.

He, therefore, called on the government to inaugurate the council to oversee and take up their respective positions as embedded in the law so as to intervene in the activities of the bureau.

Also, the Registrar/Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the institute, Alhaji Mohammed Aliyu, called on government at all levels to adopt good principles and standards for procurement and public financial management.

Aliyu also called on government to implement procurement guidelines to ensure compliance with Public Procurement Act 2007 to ensure maximum transparency in bidding processes or public contracts.

He said that there was need to domesticate and apply the principles of procurement in the system for probity and accountability.

“Procurement is a peculiar case that everybody wants to do the job without the knowledge but the issue still remains that an area where you don’t have knowledge, you do it wrongly.

“The institute is working very hard to ensure that best practice is domesticated in our country.

“That is the bane of the problem we have in our country where everybody thinks that resources have to be mismanaged because resources of this country is into procurement of contracts and services,” he said.

According to him, based on a study carried out by the World Bank in conjunction with the institute, it clearly stated that 80 to 90 per cent of the entire budget goes to the procurement contract and services.

He, therefore, called on the Federal Government to give proper recognition to the procurement practice in the schemes of service.

He said that doing this would not create tussle and the current opportunity for the usurpation of the functions of procurement professionals at any given time.

Also, the President of the institute, Alhaji Jibrin Ado, said the country was losing resources due to leakages caused by unprofessional.

“We are losing resources through a lot of leakages and the major reason has to do with procurement, so there is need to professionalize procurement so that offices that are supposed to handle the procurement are professionals,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Chairman of the Occasion, Prof. Mohammed Yunusa, said that the issue of purchasing and supply chain was an age long practice that required given value for money.

Yunusa said that the development process of any given country was driven by procurement process and as such must be accorded priority.

He said that the National Universities Commission (NUC) realised this and created six centres to close the knowledge and skills gaps in procurement and supply chains.

He, therefore, urged the inductees to take advantage of the centres in the universities to increase their various skills.

One of the inductees, Gabriel Goodwill, expressed optimism that the problems caused by lack of professionals in the area of procurement would be addressed.

‘ I want to actually appreciate God for the time spent to be inducted today as an associate member of this great institute .

“What I am going to put on the table is to ensure that what I have been taught is brought to bear in my works by ensuring value for money in all transactions and contracts proceedings and following the due process as enshrined in the act,” he said.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the institute had so far inducted over 3,000 graduates into the institute with over 400 graduands inducted in the group B batch of the ceremony. (NAN)