The Director-General, Lagos State Public Procurement Agency, Mr. Fatai Idowu Onafowote, has charged officials of the various Ministries, Departments and Agencies of the State to follow due process in all procurement activities.
Mr. Onafowote gave the charge on Tuesday while speaking during a roundtable discussion organised by the Agency for Ministries, Departments and Agencies of the State on First Line charge as well as those on Dedicated Accounts.
The Director-General pointed out that MDAs of the State must ensure that the foundation for procurement is properly laid to facilitate the actual implementation of the approved budget of the State Government, adding that MDAs must also follow what is contained in their procurement plans to guide their procurement processes.
He also stressed the need for proper documentation of the procurement process by MDAs so that they can give an account of their stewardship with public funds anytime there is a need to do so.
Mr. Onafowote noted that since the Law requires that service providers must pay taxes and administrative fees, the Law must take its course, stressing that service providers must, therefore, pay applicable taxes and fees to the State Government regardless of wherever such suppliers are located.
He added that sharing bidding documents with suppliers and service providers by procuring entities will ensure compliance with the due process as suppliers and service providers would have been duly put on notice before entering into the contract.
Responding to complaints of some revenue-generating MDAs arising from the peculiarities of their operations, the Director-General assured officials of the affected MDAs that the Agency would incorporate necessary provisions that would accommodate such peculiarities as corporate entities supporting the State Government.
Participants at the event stressed the need for the State Government and its MDAs to give continued support to Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and artisans a sense of belonging by giving them the opportunity to benefit more from contracts awarded by the State Government.
They also called for regular collaboration and engagement between the Agency and stakeholders in public procurement so that areas of challenge could be collectively resolved from time to time. Participants at the event shared their experiences with regard to the operations of their various MDAs.
MDAs that participated at the event included the Office of the Auditor-General for Local Governments, Office of the State Auditor-General, Audit Service Commission, Lagos State House of Assembly, Lagos Internal Revenue Service, Lagos State High Court and the Lagos State Judicial Service Commission.
Others are the Lagos State Printing Corporation and Ibile Oil and Gas and Lagos Bus Services Limited.