SPEECH BY PPRA CHAIRMAN DURING LAUNCH OF 2019 – 2023 STRATEGIC PLAN
Remarks by Andrew Musangi, Chairman Public Procurement Regulatory Board during the launch of PPRA’s new brand identity and Strategic Plan 2019-2023 on July 16, 2019 at Movenpick Hotel Nairobi
Good Morning. It gives me great pleasure to extend to you all, on behalf of Public Regulatory Authority, our deepest appreciation for joining us for this early morning. Very much in line with the excellent support that we have been receiving from the National Treasury and Panning, I am also honoured to recognize the presence the Cabinet Secretary of the National Treasury and Planning, Mr. Henry Rotich for gracing this occasion cognizant of your various commitments.
Today the Public Procurement Regulatory Authority launches its new brand as well as the Strategic Plan 2019-2023.
Ladies and Gentlemen, The Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) is a central cog in the system of gears that drive Kenya’s economy. Through purchase of goods and services the government fulfils its promise to citizens in funding education, infrastructure, health, agriculture and security among others. At the same time, suppliers of these goods and services get income to run their businesses whose multiplier effect includes creation of employment leading to economic growth.
Ladies and Gentlemen, Today we are launching a new corporate brand that is coming not long after changes in the law that created PPRA in line with reforms in public procurement. The new look signifies a shift in service delivery and passion to serve with integrity, transparency and fairness as outlined in the constitution.
The change is both internal and external. Internal, because we believe change starts from within. To effect long lasting transformation, all PPRA staff have already gone through a culture change management program geared towards aligning their attitude and behavior. For a public organization whose objective is to ensure Kenya’s resources are spent wisely, support from staff is a critical contributor.
From a leadership perspective, a new board, which I have the privilege to lead, is in place and I take this opportunity to thank His Excellency the President for the appointments. The board is alive to the opportunity to make a lasting impact in executing the mandate of PPRA.
I would at this gesture like to request the board members to please stand up for introduction.
Upon assuming office in September, 2018, the Public Procurement Regulatory Board began a rigorous process of defining the strategic direction for the organization for the next five years.
Ladies and Gentlemen, the Strategic Plan charts out the PPRA’s long term strategic goals for carrying out its mission of regulating the public procurement and asset disposal system through monitoring and enforcement for socio economic development in Kenya. It integrates the country’s aspirations as spelt out in Medium Term Plan III and the ‘Big Four Agenda’ of universal healthcare, food security, affordable housing and manufacturing.
The Plan is driven by a core message whose effervescent theme is enforcement of standards through compliance monitoring; prevention of corruption risk in public procurement; education of stakeholders; provision of accurate and timely information; and debarment of suppliers who breach the procurement law.
PPRA is responsible for enhancing efficiency of utilization of public resources, ensuring fiscal stability in both government and private sector and strengthening transparency in management of public finance.
I can say with certainty that public procurement will be closely monitored and protected more than ever before.
On employment, His Excellency the President has reiterated time and again that the youth should not only focus on office jobs, but seek other avenues of earning a living. The President has been keen on creation of opportunities for the youth and women through the “Access to Government Procurement Opportunities (AGPO) initiative. The law specifies that 30% of government procurement must be reserved for youth, women and people with disabilities. At PPRA, we constantly monitor procuring entities to ensure that the 30% is set aside in line with the Presidents directive. While this is ongoing, we have observed that not all procuring entities have achieved the 30% preference and reservation scheme as required by the constitution.
Among the procurement entities that have effected the 30% scheme, a 2019 report by the National treasury reveals that the women category won the highest number of contracts at 34,335 followed by youth at 29,170 and 4,066 for people living with disability. Through monitoring and enforcement, PPRA will continuously ensure the AGPO quota is fully realised.
In the protection of public resources, PPRA has gathered valuable information and data that will be used for two things, one, to enhance integrity of the procurement process in procurement entities and number two, to take remedial action on those found to be flouting the law. It is very clear by now, that corruption in the form of inflated tenders, poor quality goods and supply of non-existent goods and services, has a direct effect on the citizens in the long term.
Ladies and Gentlemen, I am pleased to report that PPRA’s policy and research function has been a resource to procurement entities seeking to gain experience in the process. Some of the areas of request for technical support include invitations to participate in consultative forums as resource persons, training and sensitization of suppliers under the preference and reservation scheme, training and sensitization of Board members of various institutions and county government officials.
We envisage a situation where PPRA is not viewed as a “policing” authority roving around pointing fingers, but rather as an enabler for a transparent process.
PPRA has a code of ethics whose core objective is to set minimum standards of ethical behaviour for persons participating in the public procurement and asset disposal activities. This is to ensure compliance with the Act and the Regulations and adoption of good business practices.
Therefore Ladies and Gentlemen, as Kenyans, we must be honest and face the truth that public procurement has been infiltrated by a few dishonest elements. Their actions have dented the reputation of the government procurement process casting doubt on the integrity of the system. We must resist this trend and work towards rebuilding faith in the process. I call upon all procurement entities to support the Presidents resolve to deal with the vice and to weed out those elements from our midst.
We must face the truth and realize that, for sustained socio-economic growth, Kenyans must make a decision to remain patriotic, uphold integrity, embrace transparency and promote equitable access to government procurement for the benefit of all the 45 million Kenyans.
That said, Ladies and Gentlemen, I applaud the Government of Kenya, more specifically, the National Treasury and Planning, for supporting the developments of the various products and initiatives in Public Procurement.
Ladies and Gentlemen; as I conclude, I wish to recognize the various players in procurement industry some of whom are represented here today for their committed efforts to ensure that there is improvement in our procurement system; it gives me great pleasure to welcome the Cabinet Secretary to address us here today.