By Makutu Manneh
The Chairperson of the Local Government Commission of Enquiry has unearthed some inaccurate references and inconsistencies in GPPA reports on the local councils.
Chairperson Jainaba Bah said the GPPA made inaccurate assessments of some of the Councils because some Councils did not comply with the procurement compliance rules.
“Going by the review we have done, we have found out from you that all these Councils have not complied with the rules, and the assessment that was made and the percentages given, are wrong,” Commission Chairperson Bah told the Director.
She made these statements during the commission’s review of reports of local Councils on Tuesday, July 25.
According to the Commission, the review of the GPPA Report unearthed inaccurate references and bad sentence structures that could amount to some biased assessment of other local councils,
Ms. Bah called on the GPPA DG to correct some of the abnormalities by adopting mechanisms to check their review teams that conduct such assessments.
“If you have a robust system, it will not only help your authority but it will help the entire system,” Chairperson Bah advised.
Patrick Gomes, the Deputy Lead Counsel of the Commission, said they have found out that GPPA’s references are inaccurate, saying “90 percent of all the references made will be wrong”.
“Even if you want to read verbally from these reports, the sentences do not make sense and I wonder whether you in fact conducted a review after the head of these teams wrote this report or is it just being approved just like that?” he queried.
Responding to the Chairperson and the Deputy Lead Counsel, Phoday Jaiteh, the Director of the Gambia Public Procurement Authority (GPPA), said they should have detected some of these issues if delicate care was exercised. However, he admitted responsibility for what had happened and pledged to correct these lapses.
“Our review structure should be reviewed again. We will go back and look at our system again and see why these failures are occurring within the system we have. The system is not complete, and it is not a strong and effective system. That is what it is showing,” Jaiteh clarified.
The director admitted that his Institution made some inaccurate assessments of some of the Councils and Municipalities.
Director Jaiteh added, “I know our job is to review the system again and make sure that it is robust and strong, to make sure such inconsistencies do not happen in future.
He added: “I would not say it is in favour of the municipalities but certainly, GPPA has not presented the true and fair picture of what was happening at the Councils.”