By: Yusuf M Hasan
HARGEISA (Somalilandsun) – The national tender board offices are almost turning into a ghost house due to a slow-down of activities pertaining to its mandate.
During the year 2011 and 2012 the NTB was a bustle of activity with government tenders advertise through local media on either daily or weekly basis, this was because all the state institutions were then adhering to a presidential directive of 2011 that decreed that all purchases worth $3000 and above were to be effected through the NTB .
The afore mentioned bustle of two years ago which saw the NTB offices inundated by citizens seeking the government tenders of one type or another is now a thing of the past and staff at the NTB only report for work only to protect their status rather than perform duties.
Queried on the slowdown of activities the NTB Director General Mr. Mohamed Abdi Bulale informed that most state institutions are now procuring all their equipment, stationery, spare parts and infrastructure construction from whom they directly Contract.
Said he, “This is not to say that we are not receiving business from state institutions but to acknowledge that that they are less than 80% lower compared to the last two years”
Investigations that prompted Somalilandsun to query Mr. Bulale indicate that government institutions including parastatals both at the national and regional levels no longer adhere to the President Silanyo directive that all procurements worth $3000 and above be facilitated through the national tender board.
Despite the fact that the non-adherence with the presidential procurement directive is benefitting some citizens of means, it is denying the central coffers much needed funds not to mention that it is an explicit affront to the authority head of state.
For now let it suffice without mentioning the institutions that are procuring materials and services worth $3000 and above through private contractors thence allow them the opportunity to reverse this negative trend.
In the meantime what is most surprising about this anomaly is how the office the accountant general is servicing the attendant bills and vouchers which contravene the presidential directive that ordered this office not to service such unless they have passed through the NTB.
It is hoped that public administrators at all levels will observe etiquettes procure their supplies and services worth $3000 and above through the National Tender Board thus role model for citizens of whom demands for nation building which is a preserve of all , are continuously made on.
On 8th Jan 2011 the Somalilandsun which was then 0nly eight days old reported In an article titled “National Tender Board briefs on 2011 activities” that “the year 2010 saw the Somaliland government streamline and centralized its procurement policies and procedures from the district, regional and national levels”
This was per the revelations by the Director General of the National Tender Board-NTB Mr. Mohamed Abdi Bulale, who flanked by Board committee members during the annual board activity briefing to the press at the NTB conference room in Hargeisa.
The words of the DG at that time to the effect that 2011 will enter the annals as the most successful year of the parastatals , words uttered at the height of NTB’s supremacy that saw local and foreign contractors crowding its corridors are a far cry to Today’s forlorn image that resembles a ghost house .
“Under the able leadership and direction of H.E Ahmed Mahmoud Silanyo, the president of Somaliland the NTB which was created in 1996 has managed to centralize all public procurements worth $3000 and above” DG Bulale told reporters during the January 2011 activity briefing.
The DG further revealed that following a presidential directive all public procurements worth over $3000, purchased or procured from government budget, donor funds, and/or from loans are currently procured through the NTB.
The NTB advertises all tenders in local media both electronic and print and the public is so far satisfied following the transparency and impartiality portrayed by the NTB in selecting and awarding bid winners.