…Defends D-G, Says He Never Manipulated Procurement Processes
The National Lottery Authority (NLA) has described as false and misconceived claims that members of the Authority manipulated the procurement process in order to award contracts to the sister-in-law of the Director General of the Authority.
In a statement released Wednesday, the management insisted allegations against Kofi Osei-Ameyaw and the Acting Director, Human Resource, Mr. Fiifi Amissah were calculated at smearing the reputation of the Director-General.
A Joy FM’s Super morning show revealed widespread allegations of procurement breaches by the management of NLA when a former acting procurement manager of the NLA Benony Blepony said the procurement process for the supply of end of year staff packages was manipulated in favour of Ram’s Kitchen, a company said to be owned by the sister-in-law of the Director-General.
Mr. Blepony also claimed that five contracts were allegedly taken from two companies; Daises and Danboag which had won bids and given to Ram’s Kitchen on the instruction of Mr Osei-Ameyaw.
In the process, the NLA reportedly paid Ram’s Kitchen GHS17, 527 more than it would have paid the two companies which won the contracts.
But, NLA management said the allegations were fabricated, stressing that “as part of administrative and structural reforms for efficiency and in line with the vision of the Board of Directors to generate more revenue for the consolidated fund about 32 staff have been re-assigned to various departments some of which are at head office in Accra and in other regions and districts nationwide.”
The NLA said that the Director-General and/or the Acting Director, Human Resource and Administration never sought to manipulate the process in favor of Ram’s Kitchen by removing quotations of other bidders or did they at any time ask Mr. Blepony to alter documents to favour Rams Kitchen, saying, “These allegations are false and baseless and should be disregarded”.
“Further, the allegation that the Director-General instructed the Acting Director of Human Resource and Administration, Mr. Fiifi Amissah to remove invoices is false. No invoices were submitted at any time by suppliers given that no invoices could be submitted prior to the Award of Contract and therefore to allege that the Director-General interfered in the procurement process by directing that certain invoices should be removed cannot be supported as it is utterly untrue and without any merit.”
Management averred that the procurement of Christmas Package(s) for staff of National Lottery NLA (NLA) has been in existence prior to the NLA transitioning from its original status and/or identity as a department (Department of National Lotteries) of the Ministry of Finance under the National Weekly Lotto (Amendment) Law, 1989 (PNDCL 223) and that in the last Quarter of the Year 2017, Management following approval from the Board, set in motion the procurement process to procure Christmas Package(s) for staff.
“The procurement method adopted by Management was the Request for Quotation (RFQ) method. This method also known as “shopping” is based on comparing price quotations obtained from several suppliers, usually at least three (3), to ensure competitive prices. NLA received sealed quotation(s) from three (3) out of the four (4) invited Suppliers. Evaluation of the Quotation(s) was undertaken by the Procurement Unit. It is important to point out that the Procurement Unit ranked all Quotation(s) that were responsive to the RFQ according to price and selected the lowest evaluated priced RFQ for contract award,” it stated.
Management also explained that the Evaluation Team recommended subject to the approval of Management, the award of contract to RAMS KITCHEN which was done in Lots as captured in the Report of the Evaluation Team.
Management then approved the recommendation of the Evaluation Team and awarded the Contract to RAMS KITCHEN with a Local Purchase Order applying to each Lot under the RFQ.
“The requirement of the Public Procurement Act, 2003 (ACT 663) as amended by ACT 914 and the Procurement Manual, directs the Evaluation Team to select the lowest priced RFQ for contract award.”
The NLA management therefore enumerated that as revenue generating agency and one of the huge contributors to the Consolidated Fund, is committed to generating revenue for the Nation.
It said, it has a vibrant Corporate Social Responsibility Program that supports institutions, communities and individuals who are most vulnerable in the areas of health, education, sports and the promotion of our cultural heritage.
It assured government, stakeholders, valued customers and the general public that NLA is focused on its core mandate of generating revenue for the Nation and creating moments of hope and excitement for the public and will not be deterred by detractors and disgruntled staff who obviously are seeking to bring the name of the NLA and its Management into disrepute and also to impugn the integrity of the NLA.
The management said the suspension of Mr. Blepony is not an “isolated case and forms part of the ongoing administrative reforms and not connected to any issue as alleged by him.”
They also deny the allegations that Mr. Blepony was directed to alter documents to favour Rams Kitchen. “These allegations are false and baseless and should be disregarded,” the statement said.