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Africa's Public Procurement & Entrepreneurship Research Initiative – APPERI

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South Africa: Mbeki, Manuel to give evidence in arms probe


The Citizen

July 16th, SAPA

Former president Thabo Mbeki will testify as a witness in the first phase of the Arms Procurement Commission, it was announced.

The commission, which is probing the R70 billion arms procurement deal, will hold public hearings from August 5 until January 31, subject to President Jacob Zuma granting an extension beyond November, spokesman William Baloyi said in a statement on Monday.

Mbeki and Minister in the Presidency Trevor Manuel were set to testify in the second half of January.

Baloyi said the first phase of the commission would “deal with the rationale for the Strategic Defence Procurement Package”, and whether the arms and equipment acquired were under-utilised or not utilised at all.

The first witnesses would be navy and air force officials. Armscor witnesses would be named later.

Former Intelligence Minister Ronnie Kasrils and Congress of the People president Mosiuoa Lekota would be called as witnesses between September 30 and October 4, followed by department of trade and industry officials until November 11.

Former Public Enterprises Minister Alec Erwin was expected to testify for three days in November, followed by National Treasury officials until the end of that month.

“It is also important to note that the programme is not cast in stone and circumstances prevailing at the hearings may require that it be adapted or altered, and this may also effect the sequence of witnesses,” Baloyi said.

“Some of the witnesses may be recalled at a later stage, when the commission deals with the terms of reference relating to allegations of impropriety, fraud and corruption in the acquisition process, a phase in which the ‘whistleblowers’ and those who are implicated will feature.”

The commission would be held in the council chambers of the Sammy Marks Conference Centre in Pretoria.

The deal, which was initially estimated to cost R43 million, has dogged South Africa’s politics since it was signed in 1999, after then Pan Africanist Congress MP Patricia de Lille raised allegations of corruption in Parliament.

Zuma himself was once charged with corruption after his financial adviser Schabir Shaik, who had a tender to supply part of the requirements, was found to have facilitated a bribe for him from a French arms company.

The charges against Zuma were later dropped.

Pan-African procurement and supply conference to be held in Accra


Ghana News – SpyGhana.com

By Ekow Quandzie

Ghana will host the first-ever Pan African Conference and Exhibition on procurement and supply from May 21-23, 2013 in the capital, Accra.

The event will be organised by the Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply (CIPS), the world’ largest independent professional body representing the procurement and supply profession.

Themed “The strategic role of professional procurement in the development of Africa”, the event is expected to bring together corporate executives, financial controllers and directors, public sector decision makers as well as supply chain, logistics and procurement practitioners from all sectors of African economies

The region wide multi-sectorial conference is expected to give the continent’s public and private sector executives and decision makers an opportunity to gain insights into professional procurement and its strategic link to long term economic development.

Supply Chain Management – turning professional?


The Guardian

The trend for professionalising supply chain management in the private sector is slowly reaching the public sector in Africa but still rarely appears anywhere near the top of development agendas.

The trend for professionalising supply chain management in the private sector is slowly reaching the public sector in Africa but still rarely appears anywhere near the top of development agendas. This despite the fact that, in many developing countries, public procurement accounts for over 50% of GDP, or considerably more where the private sector is small.

Historically, procurement and supply chain management have been undervalued and viewed as a process rather than a professional function. With the realisation that effective supply chain management plays a critical role in ensuring funds are well used, value for money in the delivery of basic services is achieved, and transparency and accountability is assured, the value of professional supply chain management needs to be recognised. How will this happen in countries where procurement is viewed as an “add-on” to other careers?

The wave of legal and institutional reforms to public procurement across Africa over the past few years has certainly focused attention more firmly on the question of capacity building. Many universities are subsequently providing pre-service training in supply chain management which is beginning to instil an early appreciation of the value of the function.

In the health sector, where the issues are more acute, major programmes to combat diseases such as HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis have highlighted the importance of strong procurement and supply chain due to the critical need for regular access to medical supplies. The World Health Organization identifies equitable access to medical products, vaccines and other technologies as one of the six building blocks to a well-functioning health system. The traditional approach to provide expensive in-service supply chain management training to doctors and pharmacists so that they can add this on to their day job is slowly changing but more needs to be done to raise the profile of supply chain management in health institutions.

This trend towards institutional reform in the public procurement sector is not focused solely on health. Procurement training is increasingly available at all levels, from basic introductions to new procurement procedures to academic courses run by universities. Crown Agents has worked with the governments of several African countries to ensure that their procurement capacity building strategies are delivered. Our long expertise in supply chain management and procurement reform and our ability to understand the local environment enable us to work with procurement authorities across Africa. In Ghana for example we helped to develop a whole programme of professional development that covered short, medium and long-term requirements. We partnered with the Institute of Management and Public Administration to implement the short-term plan which was based on training an estimated 25,000 people including procurement staff, tender committees, the private sector and oversight institutions addressing the cross-cutting nature of procurement. We also teamed up with tertiary education institutions to develop the medium and long term training which included a bachelors level degree course in procurement.

Professionalisation is not just about training; it is about transforming the view of the profession itself to ensure a local supply of qualified new recruits in the future. Securing professional accreditation validates and upholds the importance of the supply chain management role. In Botswana for example the Public Procurement and Asset Disposal Board is seeking accreditation of its training materials both nationally and internationally after Crown Agents helped it to develop a series of procurement training modules and completed a training-the-trainers course prior to building capacity in its procuring entities.
Many countries are even establishing their own national professional bodies as membership of international professional institutions such as UK Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply and Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport expands significantly in Africa.
In the health sector there are also a number of initiatives that support the strategic role of supply chain managers. Crown Agents has provided technical support and is an active stakeholder in ‘The People That Deliver’ initiative which promotes workforce excellence in supply chain management.
Building supply chain competence and promoting and valuing supply chain management as a professional career can make a positive impact on a country’s economic development and its people’s lives.

Content on this page is produced and controlled by Crown Agents.

Portland Cement launches vetting of suppliers


Business Daily

February 20th, 2012

Troubled East African Portland Cement Company is seeking to overhaul its list of suppliers amid a boardroom wrangle that the government has linked to fraudulent procurement.

In a newspaper advertisement, EAPCC is seeking to vet afresh 98 suppliers of goods and services, saying only companies scoring highly as per its evaluation criteria will be pre-qualified.

“All existing suppliers who wish to be retained in the database (of suppliers) must apply and submit up to date information requested in the current pre-qualification data sheet,” read part of the advertisement.

Analysts say the fresh vetting of the company’ suppliers could be driven by a need to clean up its procurement department in light of the accusation of fraud.

“The company could be moving to ensure their long-running relationship with suppliers is not tainted with fraud and that it gets value for money,” said Robert Nyamu, the head of forensic audit at Deloitte Eastern Africa.

Mr Nyamu said the review of pre-qualified suppliers helps companies to shake off old suppliers who may collude with senior management to push through fraudulent contracts.

Among the items and services EAPCC is seeking to pre-qualify suppliers for include raw materials such as coal, bauxite, and clinker whose recent supply contract sparked off the ongoing court battles.

Industrialisation minister Amason Kingi—who sought to suspend EAPCC’s board on December 22—has accused it of spending Sh1 billion on goods without following competitive bidding and, in another instance, overruled the tender committee to vary the terms of a clinker contract. “Those purchases were made by direct procurement or restricted tendering,” read part of an affidavit by Mr Kingi.

The affidavit, for instance, said the board changed the terms of a contract to supply 140,000 tonnes of clinker after the supplier — Sanghi Industrial -— requested to increase the price from $58.90 per tonne after supplying only 67,000 tonnes.

The irregular purchases were made between August 15 and November 30, 2011, according to the affidavit.

The company’s directors, who have been temporarily reinstated by the high court, have hit back at Mr Kingi, saying the minister wants them out over a multi-billion shilling tender that the government allegedly wanted to go to a local supplier. They said the award of the Sh1.8 billion kiln upgrade contract to a South Korean firm, had upset government officials.

Economic sustainability – what does it mean for procurement?


Created in Photoshop, based on "Sustainab...
Image via Wikipedia

by PETER SMITH on JUNE 23, 2011

in PROCUREMENT GOOD PRACTICE

Continuing our look at “sustainable procurement” – economic sustainability is probably the hardest of the three headings (environmental and social being the other two) to get your head around. That’s partly because it overlaps with ‘social’, as we’ll discuss below – and it contains some areas of debate and controversy as we’ll also see.

The internal facets of economic sustainability seem to be simply making sure the organisation is utilising resources to best advantage. But the outward facing element that is more interesting to procurement usually covers the development of greater economic capacity, capability and robustness in supply markets, particularly those in disadvantaged areas.

It’s particularly interesting for some global companies who operate in developing countries – at the Procurement Leaders event recently, Anglo American spoke about their efforts to develop local business and suppliers in African countries where they operate mines. Now this had an obvious strategic and commercial driver for the firm – taking these actions was often a condition of them being awarded mining rights in a particular country or locality.

But it also had the benefits of helping Anglo in the longer term by developing a stronger, more robust local supply chain, potentially increasing competition, avoiding shipping costs and reducing supply chain risk by using local firms. Anglo stressed the importance of working on both the supply side and the demand – so helping local firms build capability through training for instance, and also making it easier for them to win contracts by ensuring procurement processes were not consciously or unconsciously favouring large firmsRead more

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