The Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) has announced plans to amend the law to include special interest groups in public procurement.
This announcement was made by Mr. Masunya Nashon, the Manager of Research and Documents during a stakeholder engagement organised by AFIC in collaboration with The Chazo Initiative, at PPRA offices, Dodoma, Tanzania on 15th June, 2023.
This meeting was also attended by the CEO – PPRA with his technical staff including Director Compliance and Hon Neema Lugangira of AMUKA HUB.
The engagement provided an opportunity for AFIC to share study findings and recommendations from our study on understanding barriers and solutions to include Women-Led Businesses in Public Procurement in East Africa.
According to the country report , there is enough evidence to suggest that the 30% preferential treatment system does not empower women in business. This is demonstrated by the low percentage of contracts given to Interest Groups (0.002%) in 2020/2021. The lack of data availability makes it difficult to follow up and monitor the scheme in order to track how it benefits women.
The proposed amendments seek to enhance inclusivity in public procurement by addressing the obstacles faced by women, youth, and the disabled in accessing contracts.
“It is essential to ensure that this significant investment benefits all segments of society. Current legislation requires public institutions to reserve 30 percent of their procurement budget for special groups. However, challenges persist in meeting this target due to various factors, including limited understanding and institutional restrictions.” Mr. Masunya said.
Mr. Masunya stressed the importance of building the capacity of these special groups, enabling them to seize the available opportunities.
He further acknowledged that while some institutions face limitations in allocating the full 30 percent due to the nature of their activities and the capacity of the groups to supply, they are actively encouraging extensive involvement of special groups in institutions with regular tasks.
Masunya clarified that the PPRA has also undertaken a campaign to raise awareness and mobilize the public in various regions, aiming to enhance understanding and overcome financial challenges.
“The Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) is leading efforts to build capacity among special groups, facilitating their participation in public procurement. Through workshops and campaigns held across different regions, the PPRA aims to raise awareness and mobilize the public, promoting greater understanding of the opportunities available.” He revealed.
He also emphasized the importance of capacity-building for special groups.
Mr Gilbert Sendugwa, the Executive Director, Africa Freedom of Information Centre (AFIC), highlighted the significance of the 30 percent allocation set aside by the government, emphasizing the need to ensure that individual women’s businesses receive direct support instead of relying solely on group-based initiatives as required by the law.
Ms. Charity Komujjurizi, the Monitoring and Evaluation coordinator at AFIC, proposed providing loans or job opportunities to successful individual women entrepreneurs, enabling them to benefit independently and without unnecessary delays.
Ms. Joel Ntile, a researcher from The Chanzo Initiative Institute, revealed that current allocations fall significantly short of the intended 30 percent, with only 0.002 percent allocated in the 2021 budget. This underscores the need for more substantial commitments to empower special groups in public procurement.
As highlighted in a report launched on June 16, 2023, by the Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA), Mr. Masunya Nashon, the Manager of Research and Documents, emphasized that a substantial portion, approximately 65-70 percent, of the budget is allocated to procurement. Therefore, it is crucial that this significant investment reaches all segments of society.
To read more about this transformative engagement, check out the story article covered by The Citizen:https://www.thecitizen.co.tz/tanzania/news/national/procurement-law-to-incorporate-special-groups-4273350