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Online Contracting Portal has lifted Tendering Fraud in Makueni- Kibwana

NAIROBI, Kenya, Sept 4 – Makueni County’s Open Contracting Portal will go a long way in curbing rampant corruption and hold elected leaders accountable on how they run resources, according to the area’s governor.  

Professor Kivutha Kibwana on Friday described the portal as an efficient and transparent platform adding that it has been ensuring transparency in all government processes.

“Despite the enforcement of the public procurement reforms, there is still loss of public funds that pose a great danger to sustainable economic development. There is corruption and poor service delivery and this is what the system is changing as it creates total transparency and accountability,” Kibwana said.

The platform, which has been in use since late last year, involves public disclosure of information at all stages of the procurement process, from planning, tendering, awarding, contracting, and implementation to oversight.

It has a host of functions which include allowing county residents to follow through the procurement process, see who has been awarded tenders, provide feedback and sign up to receive alerts on specific tenders.

The governor said the use of open contracting will not only reform procurement but deliver quality goods and services to Makueni residents and urged the national government and other counties to follow suit and adopt the system.

“This system is great and going with what the President said on tenders, I also agree that even the members of the public will feel involved and the information concerning all procurement processes readily available to them. This way, we will create a rapport with our people work together in a peaceful manner,” he said.

“If the national government and other counties adopt this system, it is going to be a game changer.”

This comes just few days after President Uhuru Kenyatta directed the Ministry of Health to create a digital procurement system within the next 30 days amid increasing graft cases linked to COVID-19 at the Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (KEMSA).

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Kenyatta, who spoke during a COVID-19 virtual conference organized by the Council of Governors, said the digital platform should include all details on procurement including the value of tenders, process of evaluation and the tender awardees.

The president’s directive followed his earlier order to the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) to finalize investigations on the alleged misuse of COVID-19 funds within 21 days.

KEMSA Chief Executive Officer Jonah Manjari is on the spot over claims of manipulating the tender process, leading to the loss of hundreds of millions in what has now sucked in Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe and his Principal Secretary Susan Mochache. Both have denied roles, and instead resorted to counter-accusations.

“I direct the Ministry of Health within the next 30 days must come up with a transparent open method and mechanism through which all tenders and procurement done by KEMSA are available online,” the President said.

The platform, he said, should also include what was the need for the tender and how bidders applied.

The President said the new platform will increase accountability and trust within government institutions and increase openness with the public.

“This level of transparency and use of technology will go a long way towards ensuring we have the confidence of our people and those placed at government institutions are able to manage the resources of Kenyan taxpayers in an open and transparent manner,” he said.

Kenyatta also said the digital system will pave way for the implementation of similar processes by other government agencies.

“This is something which we must move to all government departments at the national and county level and in all arms of government, Kenyan people have a right to know how their funds are being utilized,” he said.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Professor Kivutha Kibwana on Friday described the portal as an efficient and transparent platform adding that it has been ensuring transparency in all government processes.

“Despite the enforcement of the public procurement reforms, there is still loss of public funds that pose a great danger to sustainable economic development. There is corruption and poor service delivery and this is what the system is changing as it creates total transparency and accountability,” Kibwana said.

The platform, which has been in use since late last year, involves public disclosure of information at all stages of the procurement process, from planning, tendering, awarding, contracting, and implementation to oversight.

It has a host of functions which include allowing county residents to follow through the procurement process, see who has been awarded tenders, provide feedback and sign up to receive alerts on specific tenders.

The governor said the use of open contracting will not only reform procurement but deliver quality goods and services to Makueni residents and urged the national government and other counties to follow suit and adopt the system.

“This system is great and going with what the President said on tenders, I also agree that even the members of the public will feel involved and the information concerning all procurement processes readily available to them. This way, we will create a rapport with our people work together in a peaceful manner,” he said.

“If the national government and other counties adopt this system, it is going to be a game changer.”

This comes just few days after President Uhuru Kenyatta directed the Ministry of Health to create a digital procurement system within the next 30 days amid increasing graft cases linked to COVID-19 at the Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (KEMSA).

Kenyatta, who spoke during a COVID-19 virtual conference organized by the Council of Governors, said the digital platform should include all details on procurement including the value of tenders, process of evaluation and the tender awardees.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

The president’s directive followed his earlier order to the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) to finalize investigations on the alleged misuse of COVID-19 funds within 21 days.

KEMSA Chief Executive Officer Jonah Manjari is on the spot over claims of manipulating the tender process, leading to the loss of hundreds of millions in what has now sucked in Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe and his Principal Secretary Susan Mochache. Both have denied roles, and instead resorted to counter-accusations.

“I direct the Ministry of Health within the next 30 days must come up with a transparent open method and mechanism through which all tenders and procurement done by KEMSA are available online,” the President said.

The platform, he said, should also include what was the need for the tender and how bidders applied.

The President said the new platform will increase accountability and trust within government institutions and increase openness with the public.

“This level of transparency and use of technology will go a long way towards ensuring we have the confidence of our people and those placed at government institutions are able to manage the resources of Kenyan taxpayers in an open and transparent manner,” he said.

Kenyatta also said the digital system will pave way for the implementation of similar processes by other government agencies.

“This is something which we must move to all government departments at the national and county level and in all arms of government, Kenyan people have a right to know how their funds are being utilized,” he said.

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