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TETFund empower institutions to sanction erring contractors

Executive Secretary of TETFund, Sonny Echono

The Tertiary Education Trust Fund, TETFund, has recommended the termination of contracts and sanctions for erring contractors handling projects in institutions benefiting from its various interventions.

Executive Secretary of TETFund, Sonny Echono, stated this at the 2021 Annual General Meeting of the Procurement Professionals Association of Nigeria, PPAN, which also featured election into its executive positions.

Echono, who acknowledged that there were challenges of high cost of materials in the last year, said the fund has been coping with the situation as it has designed ways of responding to it.

He said TETFund is working with regulatory authorities to get support towards ensuring that its projects are not abandoned in its beneficiary institutions.

On tackling corruption in procurement, Mr Echono described corruption as one of the manifestations or incentives for mis-procurement.

“Procurement is the major source of pecuniary gain because more often than not the contract system has become so endemic and embedded in our system that people also see it as the main source of unearned income.

“So, what we need to do is to professionalise the sector and ensure that those who carry out those activities are trained to do so. We need to reinforce the system, our checks, the regulatory functions, and the role of all our anticorruption agencies should be more preventive.

 The Chairman Board of Trustees of the Public Procurement Association of Nigeria, Emeka Eze, expressed happiness at the clarification that projects approved for TETFund’s beneficiary institutions have no entanglements.

 Eze said the approach encourages the institutions to engage the services of contractors of their choice as provided under the Public Procurement Act, adding that by so doing, TETFund was encouraging good procurement practice in the institutions.

Eze, who was also a former Director-General of the Bureau of Public Procurement, said in tackling corruption in public procurement, instead of criminalising administrative misbehaviours, the country should improve on administrative sanctions.

The new executive members elected to head the association are Chairman, Prof James Akanmu, Vice Chairman- Mazi Emmanuel Onyeama, Secretary, Mr Olagoke Otutuloro, Financial Secretary, Shehu Dabo, Treasurer, Kyone Sale Ladi, Auditor, Yahaya Baba, Social Welfare, Akum Pascal.

Speaking shortly after his election, the chairman of the association, Akanmu, pledged on behalf of his executive, to enthrone integrity, transparency, and honesty in the procurement profession.

Reporting by Hassain Hussain; Editing by Daniel Adejo