Eleven contracts awarded to the sister-in-law of the Chief Executive of the National Lotteries Authority Kofi Osei Ameyaw has raised questions of conflict of interest.
The CEO approved the contracts worth more than half a million cedis to Rama Hassan to supply end-of-year packages.
All the contracts were dated November 29, 2017, and awarded to Rama Hassan who is the sole proprietor of Ram's Kitchen to buy more than a 1,000 bags of rice, canned drinks, corned beef and tinned tomatoes.
The NLA boss is not allowed by the Procurement Act to approve contracts more than 100,000 cedis. The highest of the 11 contracts is 99,470 cedis.
|ITEMS SUPPLIED BY RAM'S KITCHEN|
|NAME OF COMPANY||CONTRACT DESCRIPTION||TOTAL AMOUNT|
|Rams Kitchen||Supply & Distribution of End of Year Package (200 5L Veg. Oil)||47,000|
|Rams Kitchen||Supply & Distribution of Plastic Mineral Beverage (1,122 500ml/12pck)||47,124.00|
|Rams Kitchen||Supply & Distribution of End of Year Package (Perfumed Rice-333 25kg)||99,234.00|
|Rams Kitchen||Supply & Distribution of End of Year Package (Perfumed Rice-343 5x5 25kg)||99,470.00|
|Rams Kitchen||Supply & Distribution of End of Year Package (Perfumed Rice-168 50kg||99,120.00|
|Rams Kitchen||Supply & Distribution of End of Year Package (Tinned Tomatoes -171 400gx24)||18,468.00|
|Rams Kitchen||Supply & Distribution of End of Year Package (Beta Malt Drink 842 pkts)||42,100.00|
|Rams Kitchen||Supply & Distribution of End of Year Package (Canned Drinks - 130 cartons)||15,600.00|
|Rams Kitchen||Supply & Distribution of End of Year Package (Mackerel - 182 400gx24 carton)||40,040|
|Rams Kitchen||Supply & Distribution of End of Year Package (Corned Beef-182 Lele cartons)||45,500.00|
|Rams Kitchen||Supply & Distribution of End of Year Package (Olive Oil)||25,920.00|
Speaking to Corruption Watch in an interview, Rama Hassan insists she won the contracts on merit and not based on her family ties to Kofi Osei Ameyaw.
"I heard about the bid process. I applied for it...I went through the process...I got the contract, free and fair", she maintained.
Her company is no longer operating three months after executing the NLA contracts, Corruption Watch has found.
In a reaction on Citi FM, the NLA Chief Executive defended the award of the contracts to his sister-in-law and suggested the law does not forbid a relative of a public office holder from doing business.
"I don't preside over the process of procurement. People just go around and make preposterous allegations.
"It is about time Ghanaians stop all this hullabaloo about who is a relative and who is not a relative.
"If a company ...bids for a project competitively....and somebody wins, I don't think it is conflict of interest. People don't even understand what conflict of interest means," he stressed.
A procurement expert, Godfrey Ewool has raised concerns that separate purchasing orders were made for food items from a single supplier. He believes it would have been reasonable if multiple suppliers were involved.
The procurement expert said to establish an actual conflict of interest it must be determined that an evaluation of the various bids was done.
"The decision to award is made at evaluation stage. Who carried out the evaluation of the quotation? What role did the CEO play in the evaluation of the quotation and the subsequent recommendation for the award?"
"If it is established that there was no proper evaluation...then we have a case of conflict of interest," he said.
He concedes that matters of conflict of interest in procurement is a "slippery" area. Nothing stops a relative from bidding a contract but he said a Chief Executive envisaging a conflict of interest situation will be better advised to declare the interest.
"When it comes to these moral issues we all don't behave in the same manner".
The Public Procurement Act directs that "where the Head of Entity has a conflict of interest in any submission, he shall
declare his interest in the submission and refer it to the officer to whom authority has been delegated"
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