In a bid to improve transparency and accountability in contracts entered into by public and private enterprises in the country, the Federal Government says it will launch a contract disclosure web portal. The acting Director-General, Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), Mr. Chidi Izuwah said this on Wednesday in Abuja at a Public Private Partnership (PPP) training workshop organised by the World Bank.
Izuwah said the ICRC and the World Bank had been working together to ensure more openness and transparency in PPPs in Nigeria. To this end, stakeholder engagements had taken place and an improved PPP Disclosure Framework developed with MDAs input and buy in.
There were currently 51 ongoing PPP projects entered into by the Federal Government, cutting across all sectors and 77 pipeline projects which the public may not be aware of. He said that the Website was set to launch at the end of August, 2017 and that all federal government’s Ministries, Agencies and Departments were expected to disclose fully all their PPP contracts.
“This disclosure initiative is designed to ensure that all non-confidential information relating to PPP contracts, both pre and post contract information is made available and easily accessible to members of the public. “The disclosure is expected to bring improvement and engender confidence in PPP contract transactions in Nigeria.
“It is also hoped that Nigerians, through the disclosure, will be better educated and informed on the salient features of PPP contracts. “This includes agreed standards of service, scope of work, parties to the contract, general overview of the project, social and economic benefits of the project, as well as risk allocation and the actual performance levels achieved,’’ he said. Izuwah said that the portal was not just directed for local use, but would also serve to encourage foreign direct investments into the country.
He also said that the new process would ensure that contractors keep their own side of the bargain. “For example, at the airport, what quality of service should you expect, what are your entitlements, what are you paying for? “All these information will be made available so that Nigerians will be equipped to be able to insist and get the services they are entitled to,’’ he said. Also, the Senior Consultant on Public Private Partnerships, World Bank Group, Mr. Prashant Sharma said the bank was assisting Nigeria, Kenya, Honduras and Ghana develop a PPP Contract Information Disclosure website.
He said this would improve transparency in the procurement process and when the website goes live in August, Nigeria would be the leading country in the world in transparency and accountability in PPP contracts. “We have been working with the ICRC over the last one year to develop an organized platform to actually deliver information and disclose information about public private partnership.
“To create a platform through which all relevant information, useful for the public to know more about public private partnerships are made public in a organized and systemized way,’’ he said.