Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbe said, Nigeria’s current Procurement Act was the most complex in the world.
He told the Senate Committee on Agriculture when he was being grilled on the ministry’s 2017 budget performance on Thursday.
He explained that farming was seasonal, hence, when there was procurement complications as it were, it would have affected agricultural productions for that years. He said, they were having procurement difficulties.
Ogbe added that the current public procurement act favoured the rich, thereby, making it difficult for smaller contractors to have access to government contracts.
Elucidating the bogus procurement process, he said: “Distinguished Senators, you and I are politicians. You know we have pressures from those that worked with us and right now, we cannot help them.”
“How can you demand for ITF, Pencom, and so many other certificates for smaller contracts in the range of N5 million or N10million. Poor contractors cannot afford.”
Reacting, Senator Sabi Abdullahi explained that as a minister, he has policy powers, promising that Senate would look into the matter.
The Minister further revealed that government has started training agricultural extension officers across the country on proper planting of crops for bumper harvest in order to force down prices of food commodities.
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