The Mpower Workshop on Opportunities for Procurement within Mombasa County was held on 27th September 2018 at Ratna Square, Mombasa. Participants from different fields had the chance to gain valuable knowledge on the different opportunities that exist in the procurement sector.
The topics discussed in the workshop included the following;
HOW TO ACCESS GOVERNMENT PROCUREMENT OPPORTUNITIES
Mr. Onesmus Makalu an AGPO officer based at Huduma Center Mombasa made a presentation on the purpose, requirement for registration and benefits of AGPO. Access to Government Procurement Opportunities was established with the aim of facilitating the youth, women and persons with disability owned enterprises to be able to participate in government procurement without competition from established firms.
AGPO can be reached at Huduma Centres nationwide.
ROLE OF PROCUREMENT OFFICERS
Mr. Edwin Momanyi, a Procurement expert and a licensed supply chain practitioner clearly explained the procurement officers’ roles and responsibilities, functions of procuring unit and the responsibility of the accounting officers. He explained the process of both public and private procurement and the basic concepts involved.
Mr. Momanyi who also works in a government parastatals, encouraged the participants to participate in tenders. Many people disregard tenders because they think they won’t win it but if you don’t try to bid, you cannot blame anyone. He gave his own experience as a procurement officer, that his team strictly award tenders on merit and give work equally to prequalified suppliers. He gave instances where bidders have questioned the process and how this can be managed professionally to ensure transparency.
FROM THE TENDER APPLICATION TO THE COMPLETION OF THE PROJECT.
WHAT SUPPLIERS MUST LOOK OUT FOR IN PUBLIC PROCUREMENT
Mr. Jonathan Ekal from PPRA explained the public procurement process and the role of Public Procurement Regulatory Authority under the Public Procurement and Asset Disposal ACT 2015. He highlighted some common mistakes bidders make. Participants were taken through a practical exercise of interpreting a standard tender document and filling it in.
They also discussed different options and got tips on how to handle disputes during the tender process and after the work has been performed. He encouraged the participants to visit the Public Procurement Information Portal to view contact awards and tender notices by public procurement entities.
You can get in touch with the Public Procurement Regulatory Authority at Ambalal House, South wing, 8th floor.
WOMEN ENTERPRISE FUND
Laurent Ahsantey a representative from the Women Enterprise Fund expounded on what the fund entails. The fund is a Semi-Autonomous Government Agency whose purpose is to mobilize resources for sustainable access to affordable financial and business support services to empower Kenyan women. He explained the requirements for accessing the funds and cleared some of the common misconceptions regarding the fund.
The WEF was urged to include other banks (at least 5) in their Scheme. The participants felt it was unfair to have the WEF funds channeled only through KCB Bank.
You can get in touch with them at a Huduma Center near you.
HIGHLIGHTING THE OPPORTUNITIES AND THE TENDERING PROCESS IN THE COUNTY GOVERNMENT OF MOMBASA
Mr. Omar a representative from Mombasa County procurement department informed the participants about the government move to e-procurement system. This system is set to reduce human interference in the procurement process. Anyone currently working with a government body needs to register on the e-procurement platform in order to be recognized as a supplier.
A lot of the participants were eager to know whether tenders awarded by the County Government of Mombasa get paid. He assured them that although sometimes the pay is delayed, the suppliers do eventually get paid. The participants urged the County to expedite payments since many bidders rely on the revenue to do business.
FAULU MICROFINANCE BANK
Faulu Microfinance Bank was one of the sponsors of this event. It was represented by Mr. Miller Abudu, the Branch Manager of Faulu Bank Kengeleni. The bank is renowned for financial transformation via the provision of financial education and integrated financial services that include;
- Insurance across the Retail
- Micro and SME segments.
Faulu credit products are designed to cater for SME growth needs in the following ways;
- Business expansion and working capital.
- Import and Export financing.
- LPO financing and invoice discounting.
- Asset and Trade financing.
You can get in touch with them at Kengeleni – Nyali Complex 1st floor, contacts 0770231145 or 0770231795.
The feedback from the participants was that the topics were informative. The speakers were detailed and had well summarized presentations. In general the participants had an opinion that the workshop was relevant and that they would recommend Mpower Limited to their friends.