Gero Friedl, Senior Adviser on Good Governance of the German Technical Cooperation (GTZ) on Friday called for joint efforts that would strengthen the use of a single country system in fighting corruption in Ghana's procurement sector.
"Joint efforts by Ghana and Germany would help in fighting corruption not with mere rhetoric but in the practical daily work of procurement officers.
Friedl was speaking at the signing of a Financing agreement between GTZ and Public Procurement Authority (PPA) for a 1.
5 million dollar support to the PPA for its short, medium and long-term capacity development and training Programme for target groups.
The programmes are aimed at ensuring that the Public Procurement Act, 2003, would ensure that public procurement is carried out in a fair, transparent and non-discriminatory manner to enable government and the Ghanaian taxpayer get best value for its limited resources.
The target groups include entity tender committees, tender review boards, providers of goods, works and services to the public and private sector, Ghana Audit Service, internal auditors, Serious Fraud Office, Ghana Police Service, Commission for Human Rights and Administrative Justice, oversight institutions, members of parliament, general public, media and procurement practitioners.
Friedl said GTZ would work towards the alignment of the procurement calendars to the budget disbursement calendar of the state budget in order to remove bottle necks like deviation rates and generate a single reporting system.
"GTZ would be disbursing GH¢ 320,000 in the next few days to support existing training contracts and have supported PPA with office equipment worth GH¢ 30,000 which would be delivered this week and we are ready for additional consultancy work", he said.
Friedl gave the assurance that GTZ would contribute to economic development by tackling challenges facing local suppliers, public private venture ships and oil licensing companies.
"The procurement Act 663 which covers all the target groups in the public procurement process should be better understood, more widely implemented and perhaps revised for the forthcoming challenges of the oil and gas era", he said.
Friedl commended the PPA for articulating the principles of equal chance for bidders, transparency and economic use of the taxpayer's money.
Fred Randall, Country Director of GTZ, urged Ghana and Germany to deepen their relations for mutual benefits.
Agyenim Boateng Adjei, Chief Executive Officer of PPA said with procurement accounting for about two-thirds of public expenditure, every effort had been made to ensure that stakeholders received the necessary training for the effective implementation of public procurement Act, 2003.
"The training Programme which began in September, 2007 has so far trained 84,000 participants in target groups across the 10 regions of the country from government and the Department for International Development (DFID).
Mop up programmes would be organized for procurement practitioners, members of entity tender committees and tender review boards who did not benefit from the first phase of the short-term training Programme.
Boateng expressed the hope that the collaboration between PPA and GTZ would help in producing an efficient and effective human resource base not only for Ghana but also for the rest of Africa.