Why Adamawa govt may lose $2.5m World Bank grant – Expert

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Mr Abdul Mamman a public procurement expert, says the Adamawa Government risk losing $2.5 million dollars World Bank special grant under the State Fiscal Transparency, Accountability and sustainability Programme for Results (SFTAS).

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the development followed a draft bill letter sent to the Speaker of the House, dated 31/5/2021 and signed by Gov. Ahmadu Fintiri.

In the letter, Fintiri urged for amendment of the law to give executive status for the Chairman and three non-officio members of the state Board of Public Procurement to a full time members of state Bureau for Public Procurement.

NAN reports that the state board on public procurement has 12 members headed by a Chairman while the Bureau has a Director General, who was the accounting officer with other senior officers of the civil service.

The executive bill was sponsored by the Majority Leader, Adamawa State House of Assembly, Mr Hamantukur Yettisuri, member representing Jada-Mbulo state constituency, on June 16, it has scaled first reading.

Speaking to journalists on the implications of the proposed amendment on Thursday in Yola, an Abuja based procurement expert, Mr Abdul Mamman, said the action would drift the state backward as against its current ranking as a model in the country.

Mamman said that the world bank had under this programme proposed an amendment in the state public procurement law to grant complete independence for the state bureau of public procurement to conform with global best practices as a qualification for a special grant of 2.5 million dollars.

He disclosed that the state had since 2019 enjoyed such interventions amounting to billions of naira as reward for compliance to Open Government Partnership.

The bank used agencies such as the State Board of Internal Revenue, Fiscal Responsibility Commission, Planning Commission, State Auditors Offices and the Bureau of Public Procurement as indicators for gauging government transparency and accountability drive.

“If the bill is passed into law, it will be an abnormality and Adamawa State will surely lose its integrity and the grant it would have secured to execute more projects for the benefits of the larger populace.

“The present law is a product of intensive research work put up by experts under the supervision of World Bank for Nigeria Bureau of Public Procurement and it was replicated in all the states in the country.

“Part 1 Section 3 of the law clearly states that the chairman of the board shall be appointed by the state chief executive on a part-time basis and the appointee must have relevant educational qualification and experience before such can be made,” Mamman said.

Mamman, who was also the lead consultant of Chartered House Consultant Ltd, Abuja, said that he was part of the team that worked out the two volume document that brought out the law in the country in 2020 after 10 months of thorough work approved by the World Bank

According to him, it is as a result of that the world Bank gave grant to states that has developed programmes that confirm with the standard and Adamawa Bureau of Public Procurement was one of the leading states.

He added that Section 9 Subsection 1,2,3a and b of the procurement law clearly defines the duties of the Director General of the bureau, while Section 5 also states that the board chairman and its members are appointed for four years tenure on a part-time basis.

He noted that for the sake of transparency, accountability, sustainability and results the office of the board chairman and its members cannot be the formulators and the implementations of the policies of the bureau.

“Should Adamawa state House of Assembly go ahead to amend the law to suit the political class as against global best practices then the state will also lose their chances of attracting World Bank,” he cautioned.

He therefore advised the Adamawa government and the law makers to have a rethink in the interest of the state and its people.

Source: PulseNG

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