US$1.7m E-Procurement System goes live next month

Mr. Agyenim Boateng Adjei, CEO of Public Procurement Authority (PPA)

Ghana’s Electronic Procurement System (GHANEPS), an integrated automated web-based procurement platform is set to go online next month after it was launched last year.

The nine deliverables project was funded by the Government of Ghana and the World Bank at a cost of US$1.7 million. It is aimed at digitalizing the public procurement process to strengthen transparency, bring about fairness and accountability in the process and ensure compliance of procurement laws.

The platform has been designed to integrate with the National Database System of institutions such as the Registrar General’s Department, Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT), the Public Procurement Authority’s online Procurement Planning and the Ghana Integrated Financial Management Information System (GIFMIS).

This means that the moment an electronic procurement bidding is done, all necessary information on the bid and the bidders, whether being sole-sourced or open, will be made available at the receiving end.

The project is an end-to end modular procurement system consisting of nine modules which ensures that all procedures, right from the primary attestation and registration processes to the contract awarding stage are done electronically, without any human interface.

The project is expected to increase tender participation, reduce tender processing time and tender administration cost and increase competition. It will ensure access to a single gateway and a broad overview of all eligible suppliers, contractors and consultants for public procurement policy decision making.

Launching

Speaking at the launch of a report by the German Development Cooperation (GIZ) dubbed: Compliance and Digitalization: How Technology Can Foster Transparency in African Countries, the Chief Executive Officer of the Public Procurement Authority (PPA), Mr. Agyenim Boateng Adjei said the move for digitalizing the procurement process was due to the enormous benefits coupled with the high-level of transparency associated with the process.

“Our innovative measures in scrutinizing applications for Single Source and Restricted Tendering submitted to us by procurement entities yielded a savings of about Ghc800,000 and our records show that this amount would have lost through common procurement fraud such as bid rigging”, he said.

To ensure that the system is free from cyber-attacks, the Data Centre of PPA has been well resourced to deal with and manage any unforeseen attacks that may arise. The Head of IT Support Services at the PPA, Mr. Thomas Bondzie mentioned that the centre has a firewall which ensures a high-level of encryption with security features in the system.

A total of six institutions, namely the Department of Urban Roads, Ghana Cocoa Board, Ghana Heath Service, Koforidua Technical University, Tema Metropolitan Assembly, and the Volta River Authority have been selected to start a pilot process of the project.

By Dundas Whigham