The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission has entered into partnership with the Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry to address the lack of integrity among contractors involved in procurement processes.
Speaking on the sidelines of the inauguration of the ACCI-ICPC procurement integrity and transparency training partnership, the Head, Procurement, ICPC, Shintema Binga, decried the lack of integrity in procurement processes by contractors.
He said, “Our partners in the chamber of Commerce and the Centre for International Private Enterprise have decided to make procurement contractors to come up to date with the integrity in procurement processes through this partnership.
“And it is to ensure that these contractors and vendors avoid some of the lapses that we have been seeing in the procurement process because we follow due process as a commission.
“And in following due process, we make sure that apart from the contractor, bidder or vendor qualifying for a bid through the technical evaluation and financials, we also carry out due diligence.”
Binga noted that the commission was also expanding its push for integrity in procurement processes beyond just those who do business with the ICPC.
“Now from the procurement side that I’m talking about at this moment, it is for those who do business with ICPC, but the ICPC itself is an integrity institution and a law enforcement agency.
“So there are sections and other arms of the commission that are involved in making sure that business integrity is upheld. So it is not ending with ICPC. Our partners have scheduled other agencies to interact with, as regards this issue,” he stated.
The Director-General, ACCI, Victoria Akai, said the programme was to sensitise the public and private sectors on the importance of ethical procurement and business practices.
“It is going to encourage issues around open governance, standard procurement practices and institutional strengthening.
“We intend to achieve compliance, first with the public institutions, that they see the importance of complying with standard procurement practices that have been established and to the private sector, they should comply with ethics and accountability,” she stated.
The Country Director, Centre for International Private Enterprise, Lola Adekanye, noted that business integrity and ethics were fundamental to competitive markets and democracy anywhere in the world.
“So today we are launching an impressive collaboration between the ICPC, a public institution and the ACCI, a private sector organisation. And this is important because for a long time we have always thought that corruption is an issue that the public sector has all the responsibility to reduce.
“But today we are affirming that private businesses have their own roles to play in curbing corruption. We are not pushing to eradicate corruption, rather we are pushing to strengthen the values that make us resilient against corruption, because there’s no society without corruption.”
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