PRIME Minister Kassim Majaliwa has issued a stern warning to procurement and supply officers against malpractices and mismanagement of procurement contracts that contribute to loss of public funds, resulting in poor public services.
The Premier issued the warning on Wednesday in Arusha during an official opening of the 11th Procurement and Supply Professionals and Technician Board (PSPTB).
"Strive to be at the forefront in fighting any malpractices associated with the procurement and supply chain. Be aware that strict laws are in place and that the government will not tolerate anyone found to be involved in corrupt practices," he said.
He also called on all institutions to make use of the Tanzanian National e-Procurement System (TANePS) that helps speed up procurement processes, transparency and reduce costs and corruption loopholes.
The PM assured the officers that the government will continue to support their efforts aimed at reducing or eliminating negligence and ethical violations as more than 70 per cent of government budget are spent on procurement and supplies.
"PSPTB must ensure that it operates with due diligence, professionalism and integrity to ensure that they tackle challenges posed by this complex but vital profession and that every institution in the country should recognize procurement and supply officers and include them in the management team to advise them appropriately," Mr Majaliwa said.
Expounding further, he said the officers needed to manage the preparation of procurement contracts to avoid variations and thus avoid spending non-budget expenditures.
"It is equally important to ensure transparency in the preparation and implementation of tenders including avoiding conflict of interest," he insisted.
For his part, the Minister for Finance and Planning, Dr Philip Mpango said every year PSPTB has been organizing a symposium to reflect on the real trends of procurement and supply in the country to identify shortcomings, successes and advise on how to improve.
Dr Mpango said the three-day conference would focus on how to achieve excellence in managing the entire procurement and supply chain, including the use of technology, new approaches to ensuring purchases are commensurate with value for money as well as the successes and challenges of using the force account system.
"I hope that this forum will do justice to Tanzanians by addressing several shortcomings in procurement and supply in District, Municipal and Town Councils. The topics should be presented in Kiswahili so that we understand each other better the efforts to eradicate the scourge of theft, embezzlement, bribery and corruption through procurement and supply," the Finance and Planning minister said.
He said some procurement and supply officers were not adhering to the ethics of their profession and that their patriotism was questionable, adding some were abusing the force account system.
Giving an example, the minister said the prices of equipment provided by the Office of the President-PMO-RALG are used across the country.
"This is not right as prices for construction material differ depending on access and location of shops, the price in remote areas cannot be the same as that of urban areas, a price of a wooden door cannot be 400,000/- in Uvinza, Dar es Salaam and Mwanza," he remarked.
Earlier, PSPTB Acting Managing Director, Mr Godfrey Mbanyi said the Board had organized the forum to bring together procurement and supply experts and other stakeholders so that they could learn, discuss and exchange experiences in supply chain management and bring impact to their workplaces.
The fifth-phase government has all along been tough of corruption.