The Public Procurement Authority (PPA) launched a proposed electronic government procurement system (e-Ghana project) with the objective of strengthening transparency in the country's procurement landscape and to also improve compliance of national procurement laws.
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In an address to the stakeholders by the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of PPA, Mr Agyenim Boateng Adjei, the USD 97 million project which is being funded by the World Bank would ultimately ensure efficiency in the delivery of public services and save the public purse. He added that the system would be automated thus removing the human element in the procurement processes, which will aid eradicate corruption, collusion and fraudulent practices.
In 2012 the PPA initiated an international competitive bidding process to select a consultant to assist them with the establishment of the e-governance system. In July 2016, European Dynamics, an information technology solution provider firm headquartered in Greece was selected as the application service providers and a contract was signed with them on May 26 this year. Mr. Adjei stated that a three-member team from European Dynamics were in the country to kickstart the process and demonstrate how the proposed system would work as well as conduct requirement discussions. According to him, the PPA would implement the e-procurement component of the e-Ghana project estimated at a cost of USD6 million. The e-project would also connect other public institutions such as the Ministry of Justice and Attorney-General’s Office, the Judiciary Service and the Parliament of Ghana as well as other Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to enhance transparency and service delivery. As a result, the e-procurement system would improve public access to procurement information and ensure the availability of procurement functions and transactions. To the advantage of the national development, the CEO stated that the e-project would also increase competition and lower transaction cost and increase private business activation and save revenue for the country for infrastructure development.
This is the first time Ghana had established an electronic centrally-controlled platform for managing public contracts. Suppliers will be required to register on online platform and given unique identification reference numbers to enable them access the system. With the system, qualification and verification of bidders will also be done electronically.
Mr Angelo Hatzikyriacos, the Project Manager of the European Dynamics, said the objective of the project was to provide e-procurement solution and ensure easy access to procurement information. Currently, the project was at the Transition phase which would take two months to complete before it moved to the Testing and Acceptance phase which would involve establishing support structures, customisation, integration and capacity building for another two months. This will be followed by the Piloting phase where six public institutions would be selected to test the system.
Mr Nelson Osae, the Project Coordinator of e-Ghana project, explained that apart from supporting the country’s procurement processes, it would also support the Immigration Service in visa acquisition processes. In addition, it would help the Judiciary Service in the adjudication of cases in the courts, improve the work of Parliament and enhance information management of the University of Ghana with the ultimate aim of ensuring efficient delivery of services.
The e-Ghana project also referred to as the e-transform project is being facilitated by the Ministry of Communications.