FAQs

Are the Procurement officers under the Civil Service Commission?
Yes, except those employed directly by Government Agencies or Parastatals  and not through the Civil Service Commission

 

As a contractor interested in participating in provision of services/procurement process, how will I be aware of the opportunities when they arise?

All Procurement shall be advertised as follows:

  1. Invitation to Bid: For all contracts under ICB – use of two national newspapers, one relevant internationally recognized newspaper, official websites of the Procuring Entity and the Agency and the State Procurement Journal.

For all contracts under NCB – use of the Notice Board of the Procuring Entity and the State Procurement Journal

  1. Request for Quotations – Through direct invitation of at least three quotations from suppliers list. This shall be conducted on rational basis to ensure equal opportunities. All statements of requirements shall be distributed to suppliers in writing and all quotations from suppliers shall be submitted in writing.
Based on the criteria for selection of bidders especially on years of experience; what is the place for newly established firms?

The principle is that contractors should be qualified and capable of carrying out their responsibilities under the contract. Large contracts should therefore only be awarded to bidders with the financial, equipment and staff resources to carry out the work but there are smaller contracts which would be suitable for newly established firms and small and medium sized enterprises to compete.

Can an Officer converted into the Procurement Officers’ Cadre and subsequently request for re-deployment out of the Cadre?

An officer can opt to return to his original cadre, provided the request is made within the transitional period (2012-2014)

Can the Lagos State Public Procurement Agency cancel a contract that has been awarded by an MDA?

The Agency may conduct an investigation to prevent or detect a contravention of the LASPPA Law and may cancel a Procurement contract if it is satisfied that there has been a contravention of the provisions of the Law or its Regulations.

Does the Law still have room for Direct Labour in the System?

The Regulations will provide for direct labour to be used in appropriate circumstances.

Explain what is Lateral Conversion
Movement from one cadre to another without being stepped down to a lower grade. However, this grace does not confer any other privilege or right that is not in accordance with the Schemes of Service to the affected Staff.

After the transition period (2014), the normal rules and procedure for conversion shall apply to any application for conversion to Procurement Cadre.

Explain what you mean by Lowest Evaluated Responsive Bidder.
The bidder who offers the lowest priced bid among bidders who are qualified to perform the contract and whose bids meets the specifications in the bid document is the lowest evaluated responsive bidder.
How can a Contractor that defaulted on contract terms be penalised by Lagos State Public Procurement Agency?

The Agency is empowered to blacklist or ban any Supplier, Contractor or Consultant that contravenes any provision of the Public Procurement Law and Regulations made pursuant to the Law. There are also offences relating to contraventions of the Law that may lead to firms being barred from all public Procurement for a period of not less than 10 years and further punishment for the individual Directors and Partners.

How can the Agency ensure that there is no conflict of interest in the award of contracts by the MDAs?

Conflict of interest is carefully defined in the Law and is made a serious offence. The Agency is empowered to investigate offences and offenders may be prosecuted.

How do we ensure that there is value for Money under the new Public Procurement regime?

The fair and transparent procedures in the Law are designed to encourage competition among suppliers who are qualified to perform the contract and who put in a responsive bid. Greater competition should lead to value for money.

How do you intend to ensure that the Procurement process does not delay the implementation of Projects at MDA level?

The Agency shall encourage procuring entities through proper planning of their requirements to begin the Procurement process in sufficient time for goods, works and services to be made available by the time required. The Law also provides that the period between the opening of bids and the award of contract shall not exceed 3 months.

How do you intend to fill the gaps at the Directors Level?
How does the Law take care of Emergencies?

There is provision for emergency Procurement where the State is either seriously threatened by or actually confronted with a disaster, catastrophe, war, insurrection or an Act of God or where the condition or quality of goods, equipment, building or publicly-owned capital goods may seriously deteriorate unless urgent action is taken. In these circumstances, a procuring entity may initiate direct contracting.

How does the Public Procurement Law affect the Local Governments and the Local Council Development Areas in the State?
The Law applies to Local Government / Local Councils Development Areas.
How is the whole system expected to function under the new Procurement regime?

It is expected that the new Procurement system will make for more efficient conduct of tendering managed by a professional Procurement cadre, with fewer opportunities for corruption and malpractices, so that contracts are awarded to the supplier offering best value.

How will the Law be implemented in the Hospital Environment where most supplies are on emergency basis e.g. Drugs for specific epidemics, Oxygen, Medical Materials or equipment.

Genuine medical emergencies will be covered by the emergency provisions mentioned above. Most medical supplies are required for regular medical services and should be procured through normal arrangements,

How will the Procurement Law encourage participation of local contractors?

All contracts to be procured through National Competitive Bidding (NCB) and contracts below specified thresholds are reserved for local contractors. However, where a foreign bidder indicates interest in NCB, it shall not be included but its bid shall be subjected to the application of a margin of preference in favour of local bidders. Margin of preference may also apply to tenders under all International Competitive Bidding (ICB). In all situations, the limit and formulae for computation of margins of preference to be set by the Procurement Agency, shall be indicated in the Bid Document.

In case you want to purchase outright goods such as motor vehicle, do we need to go through bidding system by inviting tender from the public?

Open competitive bidding must be used when the value of the Procurement exceeds the threshold of ₦100 million. There are separate procedures for lower-value Procurements but these should also be carried out fairly according to rules.

Is it only Procurement Officer that would be purchasing all Ministries’ items needed? If so, what would be left for Administrative Officers in the Finance & Administration Dept.

It is the function of the Procurement Officer to carry out the Procurement processes. Finance & Administration Dept has other administrative duties to perform. Procurement Planning Committee must be put in place in all MDAs, composition of which, should include a representative from the Finance & Administration Dept.

Is the Procurement Department under the Finance and Administrative Department?
The Accounting Officer is charged with line supervision of all Procurement processes through the MDA’s Procurement Department or Unit under the LASPPA Law. The Procurement Department/Unit is directly under the line supervision of the Accounting Officer and not the Finance and Administrative Department
Is there a special salary scale and allowance for Procurement Officers?

 

LASG uses Oracle e-business suite to process its financial transaction. It has purchased 11 modules in 2001 out of which is the Procurement module. To what extent has the Agency incorporated its functions to enable the use of Oracle Procurement?

An audit of the Procurement module in the Oracle suite is being carried out to ascertain its suitability and adaptability. The outcome will determine to what extent it can be incorporated in the emerging Procurement system.

On conversion to Procurement Cadre, what will be the effective date for promotion purposes. Will the officer retain the former level and step after conversion?

 

The Law came into effect on 2nd April, 2012, but no full implementation yet. Why?

The Law recognises the need to put adequate and efficient structures in place in order to ensure a seamless implementation. This would include sensitisation programs for all Stakeholders, capacity building for about 600 Procurement Officers service-wide (including the LGAs/LCDAs) and the setting up of the Regulatory Agency (LASPPA). Accordingly, the Law provides for up to two years for a gradual wind-down and transitioning between the outgoing and emerging systems of Procurement. During this transitioning, partial implementation is expected to commence in 2013 and full implementation by 2014. Before then, necessary regulations to guide implementation would have been released.

What are the requirements and qualification for conversion into the Procurement Officers’ Cadre?
Presently, any basic University degree or HND in any discipline will suffice until the end of the transitional period (2014)
What are the roles of a Procurement Officer?

The Procurement Officer primarily assists the Accounting Officer to drive and facilitate the Procurement process in accordance with the provisions of the Law. In summary and by virtue of his/her training, he/she ensures that each stage of the Procurement process from initiation to contract award is carried out according to the requirements of the Law.

What are the roles of Civil Society in the Public Procurement Regime?

Civil society has a role in monitoring performance to ensure that it is fair and transparent and carried out in accordance with the Law. It is intended that one member of the Governing Board of the Agency should be from a Civil Society Organization. CSOs and other interested members of the public may attend bid openings.

What are the roles of DFID/ SPARC and the World Bank in the Lagos State Public Procurement Agency?

DFID/SPARC and the World Bank provide support for the Procurement reforms in Lagos State through the provision of Consultants to offer expert advice. Their role does not impede on the decision-taking authority of Lagos State Government Organizations.

What are the roles of the Accounting Officers (i.e P.S/DG/GM etc) under the new Procurement regime?

The Accounting Officer is charged with line supervision of the conduct of all Procurement processes. He/she has overall responsibility for the planning and organization of tenders, evaluation of tenders and execution of all Procurement, as well as certain specific responsibilities that are set out in Section 29 of the Law.

What are the specific roles of the Public Procurement Agency in the award of contracts?

LASPPA oversees the Procurement system and issues a Certificate of Compliance prior to the award of contracts above a threshold.

What are the steps involved in contract dispute resolution?

The first step should be to seek amicable settlement, without compromising important requirements under the contract or allowing the contractor to reduce the quality of the goods, works or services provided. Contracts should also include an arbitration clause. Legal action may sometimes be necessary but should be taken only as a last resort when other steps have failed. Contractors who fail to execute contracts satisfactorily and to meet contractual obligations may be blacklisted by the Agency.

What does the Public Procurement Law seek to achieve?

The Lagos State Public Procurement Law is based on the UNCITRAL model which is a properly regulated Procurement system benchmark on international best practice. The model draws from different legal cultures; balances the interest of foreign and domestic bidders; promotes transparency and allows great flexibility in the use of the provisions of the Law. The Law also established the Lagos State Public Procurement Agency and its Governing Board to formulate policies and guidelines for the application of the Law and ensure compliance by all public bodies.

What happens where the lowest cost evaluated bid from the bidders who respond to the bid solicitation is higher than the established in-house estimate by the MDA in view of the fact that the Procurement Law does not allow for negotiations?
The procuring entity may reject any bid and cancel Procurement proceedings without incurring any liability to bidders if the lowest evaluated bid does not offer value for money.  Moreover, the Agency may refuse to endorse the award of a contract on the grounds that the price is manifestly excessive.  In these circumstances, the procuring entity should begin the Procurement process again with amended specifications that are more in line with what the market can provide and its budgetary limitations.  If there has been reasonable competition, the procuring entity should consider whether the in-house estimate is realistic.
What is Public Procurement and how does it differ from the familiar ‘Purchasing and Supply Management’?

Public Procurement is the process whereby public sector organisations acquire goods, services and works from third parties. The process should be efficient, transparent, and competitive as much as feasible, in order to attain best value for public expenditure and inspire public confidence, considering the fact that the public are the major stakeholders of Government.
Private sector Procurement (generally called Purchasing and Supply) also seeks to obtain goods and services at best value but, unlike a public sector organization, is not obliged to provide equal treatment to all its citizens in the business community. Accordingly, it is common in the private sector to construct longer-term relationships with a key group of suppliers and contractors and to seek efficiencies throughout the supply chain.

What is the difference between the old system of Procurement and the new system?

In the old system, Procurement is centralised with contract award decisions taken by a central Tenders Board. Operations are guided by Financial Regulations / Treasury Circulars on public expenditure as issued by the Ministry of Finance. Over time and as Procurement expanded the FR/TC became grossly inadequate, giving room to discretionary application and promoting corruption
In the new system, Procurement is decentralised but with a central regulation through a Procurement Law. Responsibility for compliance rests with the Accounting Officer of the MDA and enforcement through a specialised Regulatory Agency. The new system is robust and effective and gives a step by step approach for each category of Procurement through the use of various standard documents and manuals

What is the relationship between Public Procurement Department and other Departments like Planning, Research and Statistics Unit during Budget preparation especially costing of Programmes/Projects?

The Planning, Research and Statistics Unit will be one of the offices represented on the Procurement Planning Committee, to which the Procurement Office will be the Secretary. Planning, Research and Statistics will also support the Procurement Office in market research and surveys of costs and prices.

What is the relationship between the Office of Public – Private Partnership and Lagos State Public Procurement Agency?

The two offices are separate and perform different functions. However, the Office of PPP as a procuring entity is expected to comply with the Procurement Law where it applies to its functions.

What is the relationship between the Procurement Officers, Auditors, Budget Officers and Store Officers?
What is the role of the Lagos State Bureau of Statistics (as an authority on fair pricing) vis a vis LASPPA’s functions?
Procuring entities should make use of the assistance of the Lagos State Bureau of Statistics in estimating costs and determining whether a tendered price is fair.
What is the role of the Lagos State Bureau of Statistics (as an authority on fair pricing) vis a vis LASPPA’s functions?

Procuring entities should make use of the assistance of the Lagos State Bureau of Statistics in estimating costs and determining whether a tendered price is fair.

What is the structure of Procurement Department in MDAs?

 

What is the structure of Procurement Department in MDAs?
What is the synergy between the Procurement Office and State Tenders Board?

For a two-year transitional period, the State Tenders Board will continue to be the approving authority for the award of contracts within a benchmark to be set by the Agency, after which each Ministry, Extra-Ministerial entity, Government Agency, Parastatals or Corporation will be expected to have set up its own Tenders Board.

What will be the role of Ministerial Tenders Board (MTB) in this new Public Procurement Regime?

Ministerial Tender Boards will be the approving authority for contracts awarded by that Ministry, though contracts above a threshold will also require a Certificate of Compliance to be issued by LASPPA.

Which Department determines prices of works, goods and services to be procured in an establishment out of the following: • Procurement Office • Works and Services • Audit • Budget & Planning
The Procurement Department is responsible for conducting market survey for all items to be procured under Goods category but may be supported by the User Department if the item is highly specialised or technical in nature. For procurement of Works, the Engineering Dept/Ministry of Works & Infrastructure is responsible for vetting the prices while the estimated fee for Consultancy Services is built up from the Terms of Reference (TOR) drafted by the User Department. Estimated prices should be set out in the Procurement plan which is endorsed by the Procurement Planning Committee made up of broad representation within the MDA. Final approval with respect to the operational feasibility of the procurement plan shall be given by the Agency.
Which MDA is responsible for the promotion and discipline of the Procurement Officer?
Civil Service Commission but will delegate the initiation of the process to the Agency

 

Who is responsible for registration of contractors?

The Lagos State Public Procurement Agency is empowered by law to maintain a database of contractors and service providers and to describe their classifications and categorizations. However, each Procuring Entity is expected to maintain a registered supplier list drawn from the Procurement Agency’s master list for their regular procurement and from which ‘Request for Quotations’ (RfQ) should be involved.

Who will be responsible for checks and balances of the Agency?

The appointment of the Governing Board will provide oversight of the actions of the Agency staff to ensure that they carry out their responsibilities impartially and in accordance with the Law.

Will MDAs have a Procurement limit or will all Procurements be done by the new Agency?

The MDAs will carry out all their own Procurements, subject to a Certificate of Compliance being issued by LASPPA.