As the Public Procurement and Disposal Board (PPADB) tightens monitoring on contractors registering for government tenders –submission of false information and fabricated documents tops the list of defaulters.
Last year, three contractors were suspended, one delisted and one issued with a written warning, as PPADB tightened its supervision on defaulters.
Charles Keikotlhae, PPADB Public Relations and Education Manager told Botswana Guardian that most matters troubling PPADB relate to submission of false information and fabricated documents during contractor registration.
“The next most affected is the works projects sector,” said Keikotlhae adding that a suspended contractor, the affected directors and shareholders are debarred by the Board from registering a newly incorporated entity for the period of suspension.
However, Keikotlhae could not reveal revenue lost by government through defaulters on annual basis, saying such questions can be directed to procuring entities. “The suspended contractors are debarred from bidding on a new tender until the period of suspension has lapsed.
“At the lapse of the period of suspension, the contractors are allowed to participate in public procurement and asset disposal,” Keikotlhae said. Still on defaulters, a delisted contractor is removed from the PPADB register.
In addition, one of the penalties that can be imposed is restitution, which will ensure the government is put back to the position it was in prior to the commission of the offence by contravening the code of conduct.
Through the PPADB Act, the Board has established the Suspension and Delisting Committee to undertake responsibilities of investigating matters of non-adherence to the Code of Conduct of Contractors and making appropriate recommendations to the Board.
“It is this committee together with the Board that ensures that action is taken against defaulting contractors,” said Keikotlhae. Penalties that can be imposed for contravening the Code of Conduct range from written warning while minimum period of suspension is 12 months and maximum is 36 months.
Highlighting recent suspensions Keikotlhae revealed that two contractors -Azraa & Asadullah Investment (Pty) Ltd and Discount Woodworks (Pty) Ltd, their directors and shareholders - are currently on suspension for a period of 30 months from 31st August 2017 to 30th March 2020.
3Pin Solutions also registered for supplies and services codes and its directors and shareholders have been suspended for 12 months from 7 December 2017 to 6 December 2018.