By Lawrence Olaoye
President Goodluck Jonathan yesterday directed that those contractors not found in the database of the Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP) from 2015 financial year should not be allowed to do business with the Federal Government.
Jonathan made the declaration while declaring open the first NationalConference on Public Procurement (NACOPP), with the theme “Public Procurement: A tool for Good Governance.”
The directive followed BPP’s categorisation and classification of Federal Contractors and service providers into equal competences and capacity for bidding purposes.
Speaking through the Vice President, Arc Mohammed Namadi Sambo, the President also said that any company debarred by the World Bank, Africa Development Bank and UNDP, as well as other development partners stands automatically debarred from contracting processes in Nigeria.
“This action is intended to eliminate distortions in bidding costs that tend to create the impression that project costs in Nigeria are higher than in other countries,” he said.
Jonathan, who noted that reforms in the procurement process had yielded positive results on the economy, said “being a good governance tool, procurement reform has enhanced the activities of other agencies of government.”
He also revealed that as the first in the world “Nigeria is setting up the first International Procurement Platform to facilitate an interface between a regulatory authority and procuring entities and service providers.”
While reaffirming his commitment to further strengthen the BPP, Jonathan commended the 24 states that have passed procurement laws, charging the remaining 12 to urgently follow suit, while also urging all the states to give adequate protection to the regulatory agencies to effectively discharge their duties.
“It is important to reiterate that Nigeria runs one economy and therefore the need for one set of rules governing our contracting processes cannot be over emphasised.
All states that are yet to pass the law are urged to pass them while those that have passed the law are urged to strengthen them in order to ensure delivery of services at best cost to the people,” the President enjoined.