26 September 2017

Burundi: Favouritism Should Be Banned in Contract Issuance, Says Local NGO

In a press conference held this Monday, 25th September 2017, PARCEM, a local NGO has said the official and transparent offer of contracts would not be a favour, but a public service. The Authority in charge of regulating contracts (ARMP) says it does its best.

Citizens have the right to transparency and top quality service. Faustin Ndikumana, Chairman of the local NGO, Speech and Action for the Awakening of Conscience and Mentality Change (PARCEM), says irregularities and partiality are observed: "There is favouritism in the offering of contracts. This has huge consequences to all Burundians. Some contracts like the construction of Kajeke dam and waste collection were given without inviting tenders"

Ndikumana says the government should review the way it is granting contracts. He says that all those contracts offered through "favouritism" have a negative impact on the whole population because they are given regardless of the means and ability of the bidders. "The contract of the construction of Kajeke dam was given in circumstances which are not specific and as a consequence, the population don't currently have water for irrigation."

PARCEM generally appeals to the government and particularly the judiciary to eradicate corruption and embezzlement in contract issuance: "Justice has to do its job. It must fight corruption and any form of embezzlement related to the giving of contracts". He says the authority in charge of regulating contracts (ARMP) has been established for the cause.

Donatien Bucumi, Permanent Secretary at ARMP, says they avoid corruption and promote professionalism in their everyday activities: "Our task is to control the offer of contracts. From the conception phase till the contract reception, we prioritize transparency and competition."

He added that they avoid discrimination and make sure there is no favouritism in the process of offering contracts.

About contracts like Kajeke dam, waste collection and others that are said to be given in unclear circumstances, Bucumi says the accountability falls on the institutions in charge of those contracts ."We only manage contracts that are given to us."

Bucumi says they receive all the contracts that will be given from different departments of the government at the beginning of the year.

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