GOVERNMENT has urged the Zambia Institute of Purchasing and Supply (ZIPS) to help fight corruption in the procurement processes.
Transport, Works, Supply and Communication Minister Yamfwa Mukanga said the Patriotic Front (PF) Government was determined to fight corruption and hence it was important for ZIPS to join hands in fighting the scourge.
Mr Mukanga said it was high time the procurement and supply professionals started defending the profession by ensuring that the established procedures and guidelines in the procurement process were followed.
He was speaking in Livingstone at Zambezi Sun Hotel when he officially opened the third ZIPS annual national conference under the theme, ‘Celebrating jubilee and focusing on the economic growth beyond the jubilee’.
Mr Mukanga said it was no secret that most queries in the Auditor General’s Report were highlighted under the procurement and supply function.
“There will be no development without procurement and that is how important this procurement and supply profession is.
“Therefore, the mismanagement of this function has always had adverse effects in the economy such as increased costs for goods and services, misapplication of funds, mismanagement of funds, lack of transparency and accountability, wastage of materials and the list is endless,” Mr Mukanga said.
He said the quality of purchasing professionals must change through continuous professional training, capacity building and skills improvement.
Mr Mukanga said despite an impressive economic growth averaging six per cent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per year, the country still needs to reduce poverty levels which are high especially in rural areas.
“We need to improve in agriculture and also tap into the mineral resources and place emphasis on enhancing growth and rural development,” Mr Mukanga said.
Speaking earlier, ZIPS President George Mumba said their role as supply chain management professionals was to support the Government in its pursuit of creating sustainable economic development.
Mr Mumba said this could be achieved through adherence to procurement procedures as good governance tenets.-Times of Zambia