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Africa needs qualified procurement professionals


Ghana Business News

May 23rd, 2013

Mr Samuel Sellas-Mensah, Chief Executive of the Public Procurement Authority (PPA), has said developing countries need well qualified procurement professionals to manage the challenges in the current global economic environment.

He said: “The current global economic environment, which is evident in high levels of unemployment, increased perceptions of corruption, inadequate hard and soft infrastructure and devastating effects of climate change, makes it imperative for the continent to have well qualified procurement professionals”.

Mr Sellas-Mensah said this when he opened a three-day Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply (CIPS) Pan-African Conference in Accra on Tuesday.

The event is under the theme: “The Strategic Role of Procurement Professionals in the Development of Africa.”

He said when public procurement was effectively managed by well qualified professionals, there was bound to be rippling effects that could lead to improvement in the economies of developing countries.

Mr Sellas-Mensah said though most factories in Africa might be as productive as those in China and India, the prices of their goods were normally not competitive due to the poor management of their value chains and the lack of requisite infrastructure.

He said there was the need for investment in the training of well qualified procurement professionals who would be able to eliminate all forms of waste and inject efficiency into their sourcing and acquisition process.

Mr Sellas-Mensah said qualified procurement professionals would provide the continent with efficient, professional, accountable and transparent functions, by using their expertise to negotiate and tap into the global supply chain to fit into the principles of procurement.

He said procurement professionals were able to conduct effective ‘supplier and spend’ analysis that would inform managerial decision and align procurement strategies to organizational goals.

Mr Sellas-Mensah said there was a strong correlation between corruption and bad procurement practices and its debilitating effect on African economies, saying countries practicing effective procurement systems were on the path of curbing corruption.

He said investing in the growth and development of procurement professionals on the continent would be a sure way for Africa to realize its dreams and aspirations.

The Chief Executive of the PPA said his outfit had over the years made some achievements due to the development of new procurement monitoring and evaluation tools, publication of manual to operations of public procurement practitioners and training modules of procurement practitioners and the high ratings by the World Bank.

“Our experiences and achievements for almost a decade can attest to the strategic importance of procurement professionals in national development.

“Since public procurement constitutes 20 per cent of GDP of most developing economies and absorbs 50 per cent of their revenue exclusive of government wage bills, it is believed that the procurement function is critical in delivering both functional and horizontal objectives of any development agenda,” he said.

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.

Ghana: Terms of Super Oil Contracts Must Favour African Governments – Kan Dapaah


AllAfrica.com

BY LAUD NARTEY

July 20th, 2012

It has been suggested that the trend in which super attractive oil contracts tend to favour foreign interest must change in favour of revenue capture to finance much needed development in African countries.

The proposal is not oblivious of the worrying dangers associated with increased revenue capture such as encouraging attitudes on the part of private sector to reduce taxable income through transfer pricing, thin capitalization and justification for declaring losses. Besides, there is also the potential for abuse of revenues, corruption and rent seeking in the management of resources among public officials.

Hon Albert Kan Dapaah, Chairman of Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of Parliament, made these suggestions when he addressed the official opening of the Summer School of the Africa Regional Extractive Industries Knowledge Hub at the Ghana Institute of Management Public Administration (GIMPA) last Monday in Accra. The school brought together experts in the extractive industry from around the African continent.

According to him, the implementation of such an idea has become more compelling against the backdrop of reduction in exploration risks profile in the oil and gas industry as well as the decline of political risk factors in most African countries.

In the face of these potentials, he urged that government must continue to negotiate terms of contracts with openness and in the spirit of partnership to ensure that interest of all parties were fairly balanced.

Hon Dapaah, who is also Member of Parliament for Afigya Sekyere West, accordingly called for the strengthening of Parliament and other institutions of State to ensure due diligence in contract ratification, budgeting and generally strong oversight in the management of extractive industries.

Similarly, revenue collection agencies must be supported with the capacity and will power to audit the cost of oil and mineral companies and collect appropriate revenues due the State.

He lamented poor development outcomes in many resource rich countries have led to citizens demanding that governments collect large shares of resource rent to finance development. He cited Ghana, Tanzania and Zambia as examples of countries which have embarked on reforms in their respective sectors to increase revenue.

In a speech read on his behalf, the Minister for Energy, Dr Joe Oteng Adjei, noted that Ghana had signed on to the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiatives (EITI) for the purpose of strengthening transparency and accountability in relation to revenue and payments from operators within the sector.

The initiative, which hitherto, was limited to the mining sector, has now been extended to the oil and gas sector.

He said government has given expression to its desire to ensure transparency in the sector by preparing a draft EITI Bill ready for submission to Parliament.

The purpose of the Bill, he said, was to provide the legal framework, and ultimately to enhance transparency and accountability in relation to payments originating from the natural resource sector of the economy and receipts by government.

A participant from Zambia, Lucy Bwalya Munthali, in an interview with the Public Agenda said, she expected that this year’s Summer school would equip her with new skills which would help her contribute to reformation of the extractive industry in her country.

She noted that African leaders were not doing enough as far as the industry was concern and this stemmed from the implementation of inappropriate policies.

IBM Experts Deliver Recommendations to Ghana Ministry of Health for Increasing Access to More Affordable Health Care


Market Watch

PRESS RELEASE

May 14th, 2012

ACCRA, Ghana, May 14, 2012 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ — A team of IBM‘s experts has presented the Ghana Ministry of Health with a forward-looking blueprint to provide all Ghanaians with access to health care, while also improving the availability of medicines and reducing their cost. The blueprint included recommendations for mechanisms to provide more timely and detailed information to decision makers.

The IBM team, comprising 12 individuals drawn from nine countries, was in Ghana as part of IBM’s pro-bono Corporate Service Corps program, in which IBM deploys teams of top employees to municipalities and countries to work on projects that intersect business, technology and society. The engagement in Ghana was coordinated with USAID, the government agency that provides U.S. economic and humanitarian assistance worldwide. IBM is also working with USAID to help other companies develop international volunteerism programs.

The Ghanaian health sector has faced various challenges, including weak logistical data, poor visibility and insight into medical data, limited medical product availability and quality, uneven planning and coordination, and occasional misalignment of health objectives and incentives. This is largely a result of a strongly decentralizing sector, leading to fragmented coordination.

An initial review of the health sector in June 2011 prompted the Ministry of Health to develop a five-year master plan aimed at addressing existing supply chain limitations. The plan recommended that the Ministry of Health establish a centralised “Supply Chain Management Unit,” an administrative body that could potentially link the public and private health sectors to establish efficiencies within the national health supply chain — the system of planners, suppliers, deliverers, and providers that ensure the cost effective and timely availability of medicines.

The IBM team of experts arrived in Ghana in mid-April and was tasked with assessing and addressing the factors involved in improving the system that manages this supply chain. The team was also asked to explore the costs and information technology requirements for establishing an automated logistics system, which will ensure the right medicines will be ordered, shipped, delivered, received and available at the right time. Such a system would also enable stakeholders, such as health care administrators, to view the underlying logistics processes so planning and adjustments can be simplified.

Key IBM recommendations were threefold. They included the recommendation of a system for informed decision making based on identifying and managing risks at critical control points. This will enable the Ministry of Health to base decisions on known and qualified risks and minimize surprises and “management by crisis.” The team also recommended that a highly accessible and visible cost model be established to enable managers to identify costly medical products and services. This will provide a clear understanding of the total cost of the supply chain in order to build in efficiencies within the system.

Finally, IBM developed a high level blueprint for building an information system supporting the delivery of medicines within the healthcare system.

“With this health sector Supply Chain Management Unit, Ghana hopes to serve as a model for many countries in Africa and other emerging markets faced with similar challenges,” said Mr. Samuel Boateng, the Director of Procurement for the Ministry of Health.

“The Supply Chain Management Unit framework suggested by the IBM experts will go far in securing increased access to essential medicines and health care by Ghanaians,” said Joe Mensah, IBM Country General Manager for Ghana. “An enhanced supply chain management system will lead to overall affordable and quality healthcare provided by the Government of Ghana to its citizens.”

IBM’s Corporate Service Corps is a global IBM initiative designed to provide small businesses, educational institutions and non-profit organizations in growth markets with sophisticated business consulting and skills development to help improve local conditions and foster job creation. IBM deploys teams of top employees from around the world representing information technology, research, marketing, finance, consulting, human resources, legal and business development to growth markets for a period of one month.

Since the launch of Corporate Service Corps in 2008, nearly 1,500 IBM employees based in 50 countries have been dispatched on more than 150 team assignments in 30 countries. Africa is a focus continent for IBM’s volunteerism programs. Since 2008, IBM’s Corporate Service Corps has deployed more than 500 IBM employees on approximately 44 teams to South Africa, Tanzania, Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, Morocco, and Egypt.

For more information on IBM Corporate Citizenship, please visit http://www.citizenibm.com

For more information about IBM Corporate Service Corps, please visit http://www.ibm.com/ibm/responsibility/corporateservicecorps/

For more information and resources companies can use to develop international volunteerism programs, please visit the Centre of Excellence for International Corporate Volunteerism at http://icvonline.org/

Media Inquiries:

Ari Fishkind IBM Media Relations 914-499-6420 fishkind@us.ibm.com

Vera RosauerIBM External Relationsveraros@ke.ibm.com+254-20-283-4350Cellphone: +254-737-537-030

Marie-Anne KinyanjuiIBM External Relationsmariekin@ke.ibm.com+254-20-283-4000

SOURCE IBM

Copyright (C) 2012 PR Newswire. All rights reserved

Ghana: You Were Not Vigilant in Woyome Case – Court Tells AG


AllAfrica.com

By Ivy Benson

March 2012

An Accra Commercial Court, yesterday, indicted the Attorney General’s Department in the Woyome judgment debt saga, when it noted that the State Legal Advisor was not vigilant in handling the case at the initial stages.

The court, presided over by Justice Barbara Ackah-Yensu, noted that if the state’s legal department had drawn the attention of a constitutional breaches in the agreement between thegovernment and Vamed/Waterville earlier on, upon which the GH¢51 million judgment debt was paid, the issue would have been dealt with.

The court, therefore, indicated that if it should deal with the constitutional arguments raised by the Senior State Attorney, in respect with the agreement, it would be delving into the merits of the case.

The court was giving its ruling in an application filed before it by the Attorney-General, seeking to amend an amended writ of summons against businessman Alfred Agbesi Woyome, where issues of fraud and constitutionality were raised, in respect of the payment of the consent judgment and the award of a contract for the renovation of the Ohene Djan and El-Wak stadia.

However, the court granted the application seeking leave to amend the amended writ of summons, to ensure that issues of fraud raised would effectively be dealt with in accordance with law…Read more.

Woyome Scandal:Arrest Kufour’s Business Partner Too (Ghana)


Ghanaweb

Feb. 8, 2012

New Patriotic Party (NPP) Member of Parliament (MP) for Assin North, Ken Agyepong, who first raised the never-ending Alfred Agbesi Woyome judgment debt saga last year, has charged the security agency and President Mills’ administration to cast its dragnet wider, by arresting Ghanaian-born Italian estate developer, Ernesto Taricone and adding him to the list of persons who have defrauded the country.

According him,Mr. Taricone, who is the owner of Trasacco Group of Companies and the two companies which were represented by Woyome-Waterville and Micheletti- is part of the dirty deal which has led to the loss of GH¢51 million and additional 33 million Euros to the state and therefore, must also be arrested immediately.

Ken Agyapong, made the call on Asempa FM’s Ekosii Sen current affairs programme, Show hosted by Nana Kwabena Bobie Ansah last week Friday afternoon.

What many people may not know is that Mr. Taricone is not an ordinary man in Ghana. He is indeed, a friend to ex-President John Kufuor. Mr. Taricone is part owner of the plush Villagio apartments next-door to the Mr. Kufuor’s Airport West Residence in Accra, opposite the African Regency Hotel nicknamed “Hotel Kufuor”.

Insiders tells stories of what is suggested to be a cleverly crafted deal between the Kufuor family and Mr. Taricone. It is reported that a substantial portion (60 percent) of the Villagio apartment, which is run under the Trasacco Group of Companies, is owned by the Kufuor dynasty hidden in the name of “Chief Kufuor and family”.

As to how ex-President Kufuor orchestrated the cancellation of Mr. Taricone’s contract, to construct the stadia for the 2008 Africa Cup of Nations (CAN 2008) awarded his two companies- Waterville and Micheletti- and led to his(Tracone) harvesting of 33 million Euros from state coffers is yet to be explained by Mr. Kufuor.

What is unclear is whether Mr. Kufuor stage-managed the abrogation of the contracts to Ernesto Taricone’s Waterville and Micheletti, and awarded it to the Shanghai Construction Group of China, to enable his government pay quickly the two companies the huge compensation under judgement debt, ostensibly for him (Kufuor) to also take his share.

The shocking thing about the Shanghai Construction Group of China deal is that the transaction did not go to Parliament for approvalRead more.

IBM launches new centre in Ghana


Citifmonline.com

International Business Machine (IBM) as part of its 100 years anniversary on Thursday announced the opening of a new procurement centre in Ghana to support IBM’s rapid business growth in the region and lay the foundation for additional industry growth initiatives throughout the continent.

The new Accra centre will serve clients and business partners in Ghana and 16 other African countries including Nigeria, Kenya, Burkina Faso, Chad, Congo Brazzaville, Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, Madagascar, Malawi, Niger, Seychelles, South Africa, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia.

The procurement centre opening coincided with the launch of the IBM 2011 “Driving Efficiency” road show. 

In a presentation, the Head of Strategic Lead, Muhammed El Shanawany said storage efficiency expectations continue to rise as information keep doubling from 18-24 months, 20 -40 per cent growth per year with 70 percent of IT budget spent on management systems.

IBM will staff the procurement centre with local talent to help ensure the development of new skills for a modern workforce and to help stimulate economic growth market.

IBM previously announced a collaborative partnership with the University of Ghana. Through this partnership IBM provided educational programming, curricula and technology experts to the university.

Ghana assists Liberia to build Procurement Capacity


Independence Arch, Accra, Ghana
Image via Wikipedia

Myjoyonline.com

October 5, 2011

In furtherance of procurement reforms in the West African sub-region, the World Bank is supporting an initiative in which the Government of Ghana, represented by the Ghana Public Procurement Authority (PPA) is sharing a full set of procurement curriculum and training materials with the Government of Liberia, as represented by the Liberia Public Procurement and Concessions Commission.

On Tuesday September , 2011 the sponsors of the Ghana Procurement Capacity Programme (Millennium Development Authority (MIDA) of Ghana, with funding through Millennium Challenge Corporation of the USA (MCC)) presented copies of the soft and hard copies to the World Bank procurement team in Accra, Ghana who have facilitated this international cooperation.

The materials developed are for tertiary level education in Ghana for students specializing in procurement, which are now, to be adapted and made available for the training of procurement professionals in Liberia.

The set of materials, including curricula and modules as well as accompanying lecture notes in both hard and soft copies were handed over to the Lead Procurement Specialist of the World Bank, Mr. Allan Rotman by the Chief Executive of MiDA, Mr. Martin Esson Benjamin at the MiDA offices in Accra on the 20th of September 2011.

Also present at the ceremony was Mr. Charles Taylor, Procurement Specialist of the World Bank, Mr. Mathew Armah, Chief Operating Officer, MiDA, Ms. Mary Jo Johnson, Procurement Director, Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), Mr. Vidal Creppy, Procurement Director, MiDA, Mr. David Benin, Director, Capacity Development & Human Resources of the Public Procurement Authority (PPA) who represented the Chief Executive, PPA and Mr. Carl Lokko, Project Coordinator, MiDA.

In presenting the materials, the CEO of MiDA, Mr. Martin Eson Benjamin noted: procurement is a major challenge facing the smooth implementation of development projects and programmes in our part of the world. We at MiDA made it a priority to develop these materials for our own use, and we are happy that they can be useful to our neighbors in Liberia.

Under the Public Procurement and Concession Law, it is mandatory that each Procurement Unit be staffed with persons trained and knowledgeable in procurement to carrying out, on an ongoing basis, functions to ensure prudence in procurement. However, the requisite knowledge and skills to perform public procurement efficiently and effectively are currently very low.

The main challenges for the professionalization of the procurement function are: (i) the unavailability of regular in-country training opportunities in procurement, and (ii) the lack of clear entry requirements and career paths for personnel who perform procurement functions in the public service.

To deal with these challenges, the Economic Governance Institutional Renewal Project (EGIRP of Liberia funded by the World Bank) will also support in-service training of existing procurement officers in ministries and agencies to improve their performance as well as support the professionalization of the public procurement function in Liberia.

Ghana: Procurement Authority calls for ceasefire over EC’s biometric brouhaha


Voter Registration
Image by crownjewel82 via Flickr

The Ghanaian Chronicle

The Public Procurement Authority (PPA), has appealed to parties involved in the procurement of equipment for the Biometric Voter Registration System to exercise restraint and wait for the court ruling on the matter.

“The PPA will urge all the parties concerned and the general public to exercise restraint as we await the ruling of the law courts in this matter.

The PPA is a creation of the Public Procurement Act, 2003 (Act 663) mandated to regulate, assess and ensure full compliance by entities to all the provisions of the Act. It does not undertake procurement on behalf of entities but rather seeks to build their capacities to enable effective implementation of the Act,” according to a statement issued in Accra.

The statement was to react to public concerns expressed over the procurement issues and see to bring to the attention of the general public the bare facts and apprise them on the status of the issue.

On the 15th of August, 2011, a petition was received by the PPA from a Complainant-Intelligent Card Productions Systems (ICPS) for an Administrative Review to be conducted in respect of a tender for the Procurement of the Biometric Voter Registration.

The Complainant per its Solicitor purported that their tender for that particular procurement had been disqualified by the Respondent-Electoral Commission on the basis of non-conformance with clause 22 (b) of the Public Procurement Act, 2003 (Act 663) by not submitting a Certificate of Incorporation.

This, the Complainant claimed, had not been specifically stated or pre-disclosed as a qualifying criterion in the tender documents as required under procurement principles.

The petition further contended that, contrary to the provisions of the Act 633, the Respondent-Electoral Commission invited seven firms instead of the previously five pre-qualified firms.

Thus, the Complainant deemed the action of the Respondent to be unfair, arbitrary, capricious and unconstitutional and therefore sought to secure a number of reliefs.

In response, the Respondent has denied the Complainant’s assertions. Following detailed review of documents and correspondence from both parties, the PPA called for the suspension of the tender process for 30 days to enable it conduct its administrative review of the matter.

However, before the PPA could conclude the administrative review process, it was notified by Solicitors of the Complainant that it has reinstituted legal proceedings against the Respondent.

Thus, the PPA is unable to proceed on the matter pending before court and, therefore, sub-judice. GNA

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