By Murtland Haley
It has been suggested that strict post-contract evaluation done on public projects will improve the tendering process and the award of contracts in the future.
This was recommended on Thursday last, by Chairman of the National Procurement and Tender Administration Board (NPTAB), Berkley Wickham. He was at the time making a presentation at a workshop at the Guyana Police Force’s Training Complex, organised by his entity, to prepare persons who have an interest in becoming evaluators.
Wickham told the prospective evaluators that when NPTAB’s job is over, the procuring entity is in charge of the execution of the project, whereby it monitors the works done by the contractor.
He explained the tendering process to the prospective evaluators, saying that the procuring entity must first identify their requirement or need, determine the procurement method, do the procurement planning, secure their funding, prepare their solicitation documents (bidding documents), publication, bids submission, and opening before evaluation can take place.
This is then followed by contract award recommendations and the final contract award, after which there is contract management and finally, post-contract evaluation.
However, the NPTAB Chairman posited that it would be beneficial if procurement entities including government ministries, regional administrations, and other state entities, do a comprehensive post-contract evaluation.
He said that when a contract is awarded, and the work begins, the procuring entity should make records about how the contractor completes the job, whether it is delivering goods, providing services or construction.
This would take into consideration the time taken to execute the contract and the quality of work, goods or services handed over. By doing this, Wickham said that state bodies can create a database complete with the projects undertaken, the contractor responsible and the quality of work received.
This recorded information can then inform the procurement entity about the consistency or inconsistency of particular contractors who would have done previous work with the specific entity.
Wickham explained to the prospective evaluators that after they would have evaluated bids for a particular project, they are to make a recommendation to the procuring entity about which bidder should be awarded the contract.
Following this, if the procuring entity agrees with the recommendation, then it is forwarded to NPTAB, who then awards the contract accordingly. However, Wickham pointed out that projects which value $15M or more have to be taken to Cabinet for its ‘no objection’ before NPTAB gives the final award.
The NPTAB Chairman explained to those in attendance that they should not be intimated by the work they have to do. He said that once attention is placed on the criteria required by the bid document, they are to award the contract to the lowest qualified bidder.
Moreover, he said that the key principles that govern the process of evaluation of tenders are non-discrimination, equal treatment, transparency and confidentiality.
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