Latest update June 2nd, 2023 12:49 AM
May 15, 2023 Letters
Kaieteur News – The Public Procurement Commission (PPC) notes with deep concern the publication today, in the Kaieteur News under the headline, “Patterson Flays ‘Derelict’ Public Procurement Commission, says body lacks leadership, failing to carry out core functions”.
The said article is riddled with inaccuracies, machinations, unfounded personal attacks, incomprehensible conclusions, spurious allegations, and misleading statements. It is regrettable that the PPC was not contacted for a comment prior to publication as one would expect from responsible journalism.
The reprehensible attack on the Chairperson and Deputy Chairperson of the commission by their singling out appears to be of a personal nature and wholly unfounded as there is no minority decision of theirs which has been given effect.
The Commission comprises of nominees by the People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPP/C), A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) and Alliance For Change (AFC) and were appointed after a rigorous Parliamentary process, securing unanimous approval in the National Assembly.
We take the opportunity to remind that none of the Commissioners have ever been charged with or have pending criminal or other such matters of moral turpitude before the Courts in any jurisdiction.
The members of the Commission, and as singled out, the Chairperson and Deputy Chairperson are professionals in their respective fields with due respect and have head and do head other bodies, including civil society and charitable bodies, with distinction. The Chairperson is an Attorney-at-Law of more than two decades and is the current head of the Bar Association of Guyana which, under her tenure, has taken public positions not aligned with the sitting Government of Guyana. The Deputy Chairperson is the former head of the National Procurement and Tender Administration (NPTA) during the tenure of the APNU/AFC Government and a Fellow of the Guyana Association of Professional Engineers. The allegation and or insinuation therefore that there is some attempt by these individuals in particular and or the commission as a whole, to undermine the effectiveness of the PPC is scandalous, far from the truth, wholly without merit and without any logical basis whatsoever.
As previously stated by the Commission by way of public statement issued on 24th April, 2023, the matters which Mr. Patterson have raised with the commission are under active consideration and are awaiting legal advice, the particulars of which Mr. Patterson continues to misrepresent in the public domain. The commission, as is any citizen of the Co-operative Republic of Guyana, is entitled to seek legal advice as it has so done and is perplexed by the apparent contention as made in the said article, that it is not entitled to do so and is derelict by so doing. In addition to automatic email acknowledgment receipt of Mr. Patterson’s correspondence, the commission has also publicly acknowledged receipt and so has the Chief Executive Officer of the commission at a recent Open Day Event of the Commission as disclosed by Mr. Patterson himself. The allegation therefore that there has been no acknowledgement is without merit.
Mr. Patterson having engaged the commission in writing will receive a due response in writing. The commission has never received a request from Mr. Patterson to meet in person and there is nothing compelling the Chairperson to meet with Mr. Patterson in person and privately particularly while a matter emanating from him is pending before the commission, nor has Mr. Patterson stated to what end he wishes to meet personally and privately with the Chairperson.
For the protection of the privacy of members of staff including former members of staff, the commission declines at this time to comment publicly on their conduct and or performance save and except to say that: –
iii. On the establishment of this commission there were only five members of staff, mostly administrative and the commission therefore has since its establishment taken steps to build capacity at the commission particularly its technical arm;
The allegation and or insinuation that the commission is outsourcing PR work to friends and or in breach of any established processes is also wholly untrue and unfounded as evidenced by its lack of particularity.
While training activities may be the most visible due to their nature, the commission is entrusted with other functions including but not limited to public awareness, legislative reform, monitoring, debarment and investigations as enabled by the Procurement Act. The commission has set out a work plan for the current fiscal year, predicated on its functions and on which approval was made of its budget in the National Assembly, to whom it is mandated to report.
We are sensitive that persons may hold the view that their matter and or the function of the commission related to their matter is the most important. However, the commission gives all of its functions equal weight and importance as the constitution does not give precedence to any one function over another.
All complaints brought to the commission have been addressed some to finality and others still under active consideration.
We remind that the PPC is an independent and impartial constitutional body and is not subject to the dictates, instruction, fancy, intimidation, political control, direction, impetuosity and or will of any individual and or body. It is unfortunate that the commission, in the matter of a days, is once again compelled to answer in the public domain, inaccurate, ill-advised and unfounded statements emanating from the same source, as the commission has in the past restrained from so doing, and is not inclined to make a practice.
Chief Executive Officer (CEO)
Public Procurement Commission
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