Mr Isah Garba, Senior Programme Manager, Centre for Information Technology and Development (CITAD) in Bauchi has said that the level of involvement of the Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) in procurement process in the state is very low in the state.
Garba stated this in a one-day Town Hall Meeting between CITAD, Civil Society Organisations, Journalists, Public officers from the state public procurement unit, on Public Procurement and Fiscal Responsibility Laws.
He added that this had negatively impacted on the level of awareness by the people especially, in the rural areas about procurement process in the state.
According to him, the essence of the town hall meeting was to see how all the participants can come together and address issues of the procurement system of Bauchi state.
“The next important document in any democratic society is the budgetary and the budget document of the state after the constitution.
“And the budget document of any state can not be effectively implemented without the procurement process. Yet, civil societies are engaging citizens of government in the budgetary process, however, our level of engagement in the procurement process is very low.
“Civil societies are also the elites of the societies but in this case the civil societies are not fully as expected engaging the common man in the grassroots to understand that procurement process and see how he can contribute his own quota towards strengthening the process to ensure accountability, transparency, efficiency and effectiveness”. He said.
The Senior Programme Manager, however, charged journalists and every participants present to embark on massive sensitisation of the people in the rural areas on public procurement process.
He explained that the high level of ignorance of these people is the real cause of lapses in the procurement process and implementation in the state.
“Journalists should always report issues on procurement. Our media houses should please amplify and disseminate any information given to them or at their disposal on public procurement process in the state”. He pleaded.