The leadership of Chattered Institute of Purchasing and Supply Management of Nigeria (CIPSMN) has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to constitute the Board of Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP) to ensure effective implementation of the 2022 budget.
Speaking during the institute 12th Annual General Meeting (AGM) held in Abuja, the CIPSMN president, Alhaji Ado Jibrin also decried the politicisation of the appointment of heads of Bureau of Public Procurement and Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) over the years.
Jibrin underscored the need to ensure strict compliance with the extant public procurement laws as well as the appointment of professionals with requisite experience in the sector.
On the fate of the over N17 trillion budget estimates which is to be passed by both Senate and House of Representatives, the CIPSMN president, stressed the need to avert procurement scandal during the implementation of the 2022 budget.
According to him, “There might be a crisis with the implementation of the 2022 budget. When you look at major problems of this country, it has to do with procurement scandal.
“When you look at the scandal you will link them to procurement where billions of naira and billions of dollars are being squandered traceable to lack of procurement experts. If we cannot restrategise, we will still go back to the same problem.”
Responding to the functions being exercised by the Federal Executive Council (FEC) on approval of multi-billion naira projects at its sittings, Jibrin who faulted the procedures being adopted, urged President Buhari to ensure that due process is followed in line with the provisions of the Public Procurement Act in the interest of the country and the citizens.
The CIPSMN secretary, Alhaji Mohammed Aliyu who applauded President Buhari’s move to accelerate the procurement process through the introduction of Executive Order 5 in 2018, however, accused those saddled with implementation and enforcement of the policy and laws of frustrating the economy.
He said: “We have been thinking of meeting Mr President one on one to tell him that this specific field of endeavour that they have neglected for so many years.
“Though he tried to come with Executive Order 5 in 2018 to ensure that the wrongs of the past are written off, but it appears that the implementers of the law and policy are turning it against the masses.”
He stressed that procurement is related to everything, adding that it’s an area that affects almost the total budget of a nation.
He said, “What caused these problems, we all know is mismanagement of our economy as a country. When we manage the resources of a country, every dick and harry will feel what can I grab.
“I wish to tell Mr. President that we should take the issue of procurement seriously, because 80 percent of that budget goes into that sector (procurement), and we are not taking it seriously. We don’t allow the professionals to come around, he based whatever approvals on what they tell him. Why doesn’t he think on what we have been saying all the time to call the procurement professionals which way forward in managing the resources or this country?”
In his assessment of the people saddled with the responsibility of handling BPP and BPE, he said: “the issue of BPP I will say, it’s another problem area that procurement professionals are looking into. I made an example earlier, that I’m not a medical doctor, if you carry me to the theater, I will be able to kill as many people as I can, that is what is happening in the public procurement.