Public procurement, if carried out properly, is a key contributor to a country’s economic growth.
Amin Miramago, the finance ministry public financial management boss, noted that the sector contributes between 10 and 16 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the country.
“Public procurement is a versatile mechanism that can be used to pursue policy aims that concern areas like the environment or innovation. It is also the most vulnerable when it comes to fraud and waste,” said Miramago during a workshop for public procurement officers at the Kigali Serena Hotel on Friday.
The workshop was organised by PriceWaterhouseCoopers Rwanda (PwC) and attracted procurement officers from all the government institutions.
Florence Gatome, the PwC director, said training was important as it helps practitioners gain skills to improve compliance with public procurement procedures.
“During these forums, people are able to discuss practical application of procurement procedures, best practices and updates in the sector, as well as the role of procurement in public financial management reforms and other challenges,” he said.
She noted that although the procurement law was very clear, operationalising it is hard because it doesn’t give the day-to-day specific guidelines of the practices in procurement.” She added that compliance was a major challenge, saying that according to the Auditor General’s report, about 50 per cent of the issues raised were on procurement.
Frank Muvunyi, a procurement expert, said many contractors do not understand public procurement procedures, and needed guidance.
“When you mess up with a tender document you end up with a wrong product or service,” he said.