The Senate at its plenary session of Wednesday, 4 December 2019 passed the Public Procurement Act (Amendment) Bill, 2019(SBs 106,109, and 158) which seeks to review the mobilization fee for contractors, create an e-procurement model and provide a time frame for procurement processes.
Presenting the report on the Bill, Sen. Shuaibu Isa Lau (APC: Taraba), Chairman, Committee on Public Procurement informed lawmakers that the Committee had received memoranda from key stakeholders including Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) as well as Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) before conducting a 2-day Public Hearing on Tuesday, 26th and Wednesday, 27th November 2019 to avail the public the opportunity to make oral presentations on the Bill.
Sen. Lau highlighted the objectives of the proposed amendment to include:
- The establishment of the National Council on Procurement (including its inauguration and Membership);
- The establishment of an e-procurement model through the deployment of ICT to curtail interference in procurement systems;
- The establishment of a Committee of Directors which shall be chaired by the Director-General of the Bureau of Public Procurement charged with the responsibility of issuing the “Certificate of No Objection” to local contractors;
- Expanding the scope of application of the Principal Act to cover Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), National Defence and Security Agencies, the National Assembly and the Judiciary; and
- The upward review of the mobilization fee for local contractors.
He also explained that the Committee had proposed amendments to the following sections of the Public Procurement Act, 2007:
- Section 1, which deals with the Establishment of the National Council on Public Procurement and its Membership;
- Section 5, which deals with the Functions of the Bureau;
- Section 6, which covers the Powers of the Bureau;
- Section 15, which deals with the Scope of Application;
- Section 16, which deals with the Fundamental Principles for Procurement;
- Section 17, which deals with the Approving Authority; and
- Section 35 which deals with the Mobilization Fee.
Lastly, he noted that the Bill, if passed, will allow for transparency and accountability in Nigeria’s procurement processes.