Uganda to launch online procurement portal in June
The e-government procurement portal will bring together all bidding opportunities, successful bidders, current tenders, suspended local and international bidders as well as procurement and disposal plans for all the public entities.
Simon Onyango, the e-procurement project manager at Uganda’s Public Procurement and Disposal of Public Assets Authority (PPDA) says the new system, which has been financed by the World Bank at $500,000, will go live on June 18.
“The purpose of this system is to maintain efficient, complete and up-to-date procurement information for all public entities in Uganda,” he said. “There have also been issues to do with transparency, integrity, value for money, and we are hoping to use technology to improve upon those inefficiencies.”
Mr Onyango adds that the new government procurement portal is an integration of the previously standalone systems like tender portal, Procurement Performance Measurement System, and the register of providers, which were prone to manipulation.
The portal is the first phase in the implementation of the five-year of e-government procurement system, which was launched in June 2014.
The system is set to ensure transparency by allowing technology rather than people to do some of the processes, eliminating interface between suppliers and procuring and disposing entities.
It is also expected to end manual buying of goods and services that is susceptible to manipulation and corruption.
A World Bank report in 2005 estimated that Uganda loses about $300 million per year – a figure expected to be higher 10 years later – through corruption and procurement malpractices.
In 2010, the PPDA’s Procurement Integrity Survey also showed that suppliers spend 10-20 per cent of the contract amount in corruption-related payments; money which is in turn recovered by supplying goods and services at prices higher than the market price, compromising quality or through incomplete deliveries.