Public Procurement and Contract Administration in Nigeria

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PUBLIC PROCUREMENT AND CONTRACT ADMINISTRATION
Overview of Procurement
Procurement is the acquisition of goods, works and services at the best total cost of ownership, in the right quality and quantity and at the right time. It also involves the acquisition of goods and services at the right place and from the right source. Public Procurement is the acquisition of goods, works and services by Government Ministries Departments and Agencies. In an effort to provide development and fulfil campaign promises, governments all over the world are involved in large scale procurement of goods, works and services. Public Procurement account for substantial part of most countries GDP. The establishment of good public procurement system is increasingly being viewed as measure of accountability and transparency. The responsibility of government to ensure transparency is also increasingly becoming a serious campaign issue. Public Procurement helps ensure the judicious use of public resources. An efficient Public Procurement System will ensure at all times government acquisition of goods, works, and services are done with due regard to: · Economy;

· Efficiency;
· Fairness;
· Reliability;
· Transparency; and
· Accountability and Ethical Standards.
Economy:
This will ensure that the procuring entity obtain the best value for the money expended. Value may include more than price. It includes quality, and timely delivery of the goods or services. However, the ultimate aim of a sound procurement is to obtain the maximum value for money. Efficiency:

A good procurement must be seen to be positive. It should be devoid of bottlenecks and other forms of inefficiencies. A good procurement system is devoid of protracted delays. It must be simple and swift. Fairness:

A good system will ensure fairness to all bidders and will be impartial, consistent, and reliable. It will ensure level playing field to all contractors, suppliers and consultants. Transparency:

Good procurement system establishes and maintains rules and procedures that are accessible and unambiguous. It is not only fair, but it is seen to be fair. Accountability and Ethical Standards:

A system must ensure its practitioners obey the rules. It enforces the rules through a process of sanctioning those who neglect, disobey or bend the rules to gain certain advantages. The rules and procedures must be clear and unambiguous The process of establishing formal public procurement system in Nigeria started with the election of Obasanjo in 1999. It started with the establishment of Due process office under the Presidency. The Due process office was headed then by Mrs. Oby Ekwesili, the current Vice President of World Bank in charge of African Region. The Due process Office succeeded in saving billions of Naira according to the press release by the Agency. Public Procurement bill was passed by the two houses of the National Assembly and signed into law by the President in 2007. The Act provide for the establishment of Public Procurement Council and Bureau for Public Procurement to beheaded by a Director General. Nigeria public procurement Act was enacted in 2007. Overview of Contract Administration

Contract Administration on the other hand involves all those activities which are performed with aim of promoting the smooth execution of contracts. Contract Administration starts from the time a contract is signed to the time a contract is closed. There are various forms in which a contract can closes:

A contract can close when an operational certificate has been issued and the contractor collects the final payment under the contract. A contract can close if it is terminated and what is due to the either of the party (client or contractor) has been paid. A contract could be terminated due non performance by the contractors, due to failure of the client to fulfil obligations under the contract or due to...
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