The Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply (CIPS) has called for the engagement of professional procurement practitioners to ensure value for money.
The institute also emphasised on the need to license practitioners, not only to adhere strictly to professional conducts, but to also serve as a deterrent to mediocrity and unethical practices at the workplace.
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The Regional Head of Middle East, North and West Africa of the CIPS, Mr Sam Achampong, made the call in an interview at an executive breakfast meeting by the CIPS in
Accra on the theme: “Building a Global Procurement Centre of Excellence”.
Among the issues discussed at the meeting were global concepts, trends and evolution of procurement.
The Minister of State in-charge of Public Procurement, Mrs Sarah Adwoa Safo, the Head of Civil Service, Nana Kwasi Agyekum Dwamena and the Chief Executive Officer of Public Procurement Authority, Mr Agyenim Boateng Adjei were present at the meeting.
Mr Achampong noted that in as much as the licensure of practitioners would help fight corruption, the country would also be well placed to attract foreign investments for accelerated development since proper procurement system was key to a successful business.
According to him, corruption added 10 per cent to the cost of doing business and 25 per cent to public procurement processes in developing countries.
"We need to start mandating professional procurement processes from the top to the lowest level of procurement to ensure that there were no more perceptions of misappropriation of funds in the system," Mr Acheampong added.
A Deputy Minister of Finance, Mr Kwaku Kwarteng, also underscored the need for Ghana to move towards standardising procurement processes.
He observed that similar items procured by different entities sometimes varied in prices, implying that some procurement agencies were better in ensuring value for money than others.
Mr Kwarteng, therefore, emphasised on the need to establish quality assurance mechanisms to rectify such imbalances in pricing in the procurement process.
He said such a structure would ensure transparency and also help in cleaning up public financial management environment.
According to him, it was the government’s responsibility to ensure that “we only procure projects and goods and services for which we have money for.”
For her part, the Country Manager of CIPS, Ghana, Mrs Stella Addo, noted that procurement in Ghana had now gained recognition and that it was gradually being understood, accepted and recognised as a strategic function by professionals.
She said the adaptation of modernised procurement systems in pursuance to value for money would go a long way to support the country’s procurement agenda.
“Also, when proper supervision is conducted, procurement activities will shift from its perceived corrupt nature to become efficient and effective in Ghana,” the manager added.