Senate yesterday, passed a bill to re-enact the Public Procurement Act, 2007, even as it expanded the National Council on Public Procurement to include the Nigerian Institute of Architects and the Nigerian Institute of Quantity Survey.
This followed the adoption of the report of the Senate Committee on Public Procurement and passage of the bill after third reading.
The Bill, when assented to, will give priority to the nation’s local manufacturers in all government procurements and address the problem of projects abandonment across the country.
The passage of “ A Bill For An Act To Amend The Public Procurement Act To provide for And Adopt A Local Content Policy and Timely Completion of Procurement Processes and Other Related Matter” after third reading at the plenary, followed the consideration of the report of the Senate Committee on Public Procurement.
Presenting report on the bill, chairman of the committee, Senator Joshua Dariye (PDP Plateau Central), said it sought amendment to certain relevant sections of the 2007 Procurement Act to favour local manufacturers and ensure speedy completion of projects.
According to him, the Bill seeks to amend section 15(1) of the Act by inserting additional clauses that would close the gap created by the Act “as we have witnessed in the recent arms procurement saga”.
Senator Dariye further explained that “the issue of disposal which is an integral aspect of procurement has been aptly captured by the amendment in the new sub-clause 1(e)”.
“The committee has equally sustained the amendments of section 34(1, 2) sought by the Bill for the purpose of patronising made in Nigeria goods: this will go a long way to encourage our Nigerian manufacturers.
“The amendment proposed by the Bill in section 35 is to review upwards, the mobilisation fee from 15 per cent to 25 per cent that may be paid to a supplier or contractor.
“This is aimed at enhancing timely completion of Procurement Processes at various phases”, the chairman stressed.
Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki had requested that the upper legislative chamber dissolved into a Committee of the Whole for clause and clause consideration of the report after it was presented by Senator Dariye.
Saraki, while commenting after the passage of the bill, said that the new amendments to the act would help stimulate the nation’s economy
He said: “We all have a role to play to ensure that the Executive comply, especially in the area of giving first priority to locally produced goods.
“This has helped many countries to develop when they had issues of downturn in their economy.
“One of the things that we have done today is also trying to shorten the process of awarding contracts; this will go a long way in helping budget implementation.
“It would go a long way in ensuring that most of the funds are available as quickly as possible and jobs are actually completed. I want to commend my colleagues for passing this bill”.

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