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Friday, February 5, 2010

Procurement controversies -- Bangledesh

Editorial: Citizens' monitoring of public procurement -- The watchdog body needs to be failsafe to deliver
THE planning minister's frank admission that graft gobbles up 40 to 50 per cent of the public funds allocated against any procurement contract only confirms the public perception on the issue. Since public procurement involves about 70 per cent of the expenditures under the Annual Development Programme (ADP), the amount of money involved in it is also huge. Naturally, unless the rules of procurement are strict and foolproof, one should not be too surprised if a significant sum of the money leaks through into corrupt hands.

However, the success of the PPSC in plugging the holes through which corruption creeps in depends on how effectively it can oversee the procurement process.

But recently, with a view to speeding up the procurement process some provisions of the Public Procurement Act (PPA), 2006 have been amended. The somewhat relaxed procurement regime has definitely thrown a fresh challenge before PPSC or any monitoring mechanism for that matter meant to ensure transparency in the purchasing procedure as it has by definition become vulnerable to quarters seeking to gain from the slackened procurement rules.

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