The World Bank has commended the President of the Republic of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and the Minister of State in charge of Public Procurement, Hon. Sarah Adwoa Safo, over their efforts at introducing a policy that aims to economically empower women, Persons With Disabilities (PWDs) and the youth through the award of government contracts.
The Ministry of Public Procurement led by Hon. Adwoa Safo, recently announced that they were in the process of rolling out a major public procurement policy that seeks to award 30% out of 70% of all government contracts to marginalized groups in the society, especially, women, PWDs and the youth.
This initiative, falls in line with the vision of the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, to economically resource the marginalized groups to enable them also contribute their best towards the ‘Ghana Beyond Aid’ agenda he is pushing for.
A forum to that effect was held where the Ministry sought the input of civil society organizations, academia, the media and some other stakeholders in the public procurement business, into the policy document which is yet to be rolled out.
The World Bank Group Director, Solutions and Innovations in Procurement Governance Global Practice, Vinay Sharma who was in the company of a former Administrator for Federal Procurement Policy at the Office of Management and Budget, Dr. Allan V. Burman, interacting with Hon. Adwoa Safo at their offices in the United States of America, noted that the establishment of the Ministry for Public Procurement, is apt since a similar office exists in their country to streamline procurement at the federal level
The two procurement experts then commended President Akufo-Addo and Hon. Adwoa Safo for doing their best to introduce the 30% out of 70% of all government contracts policy to the marginalized in the society.
They indicated that the United States of America has a similar policy where 23% of all government contracts are reserved for women-owned firms.
Mr. Sharma indicated that a study they did in Ghana revealed that only 1% of the total government contracts are awarded to women-owned firms, noting that the situation is very bad and do not encourage women to bid for government contracts.
He was optimistic that the 30% policy when rolled out would economically empower women and the other marginalized groups in the society to be more productive to contribute their best towards the country’s development than what they are currently doing.
The two leaders were also happy with the President’s commitment to fighting corruption in procurement by the Establishment of the Office of the Special Prosecutor section 3(a) of the Act.
Due to the good and transparent policies Hon. Safo is introducing which has attracted the attention of all industry players around the globe, the World Bank and the IMF have invited her to attend their upcoming spring meetings in Washington DC.