by Linda Straker
- Amendments first announced by Finance Minister during 2024 budget
- Public Procurement and Disposal of Public Property legislation enacted in 2015
- Legislation will be amended by March 2024 to allow for single sourcing up to $100,000
Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell said that Government will be adjusting the 2014 Public Procurement and Disposal of Public Property legislation because sections of it are too cumbersome, and these sections are causing Government to experience major delays when it comes to project implementation.
The New National Party (NNP) administration approved the Public Procurement and Disposal of Public Property in 2014 and enacted it in 2015 as part of measures to curb corruption in bidding for Government jobs and supplying goods and services.
The legislation is described as an Act of Parliament to promote the public interest by prescribing the principles of good governance, namely accountability, transparency, integrity, and value for money in public procurement, and to establish a framework of operational principles and procedures for efficient public procurement and for the disposal of public property by public entities and to provide for other related matters.
In responding to a talk show host’s question about two things he could have done differently in 2023, the Prime Minister, who became the infrastructure minister in April, said that one was having a better understanding of the procurement legislation. “We are seeking to address that in 2024; procurement is an issue within the Government… I think the existing legislation is a little bit cumbersome; the spending limit requires that one has to have multiple suppliers and bids before a decision is made,” he explained.
The Prime Minister said that neither he nor members of his Cabinet understood the effects of complying with the procurement bureaucracy. He believes that they should have spent a little more time understanding and learning that process upon taking over the country’s administration. Via the television interview held by the partially state-owned Grenada Broadcasting Network (GBN), he assured the bureaucracy would be removed in 2024.
Amendments to the procurement legislation were first announced by Finance Minister Dennis Cornwall when he presented the 2024 budget statement in early December 2023. Cornwall told Parliament that the procurement legislation will be amended by March 2024 to allow for single sourcing of works, goods, and consultancy services up to $100,000. “The procurement framework is currently under review. While this is ongoing, we are of the considered view that an amendment to raise the current single sourcing threshold from $15,000, which has been in effect for almost 10 years, is warranted,” he said.
Once Government makes that amendment, all projects, goods, or services that will cost under E$100,000 will be solely sourced, using one individual or company to provide the service required. These services will include decorating and catering for entertainment purposes, building roads and other infrastructure projects as well as sourcing health and educational supplies.