Elgeyo Marakwet becomes the second County in Kenya after Makueni to develop and launch an open contracting portal in a bid to promote transparent and accountable public procurement processes and facilitate public oversight on County projects.
After the launch, the County will update data for past, ongoing, and future projects.
The County will also be adhering to the Presidential Executive Order on public entities to maintain, continuously update and publish procurement of public goods, works and services.
The portal was developed with technical and financial support from Development Gateway, a non-profit organization with extensive experience in open government and data management in over 30 countries and has developed a variety of tools that support Open Contracting Data Standard (OCDS).
Speaking during the launch at the County Headquarters, Governor Alex Tolgos said the County would continuously upload all procurement processes on the portal https://opencontracting.elgeyomarakwet.go.ke .The portal can also be accessed through the County website www.elgeyomarakwet.go.ke
“We shall continuously publish all data using the Open Contracting Data Standard tools so that at the click of a button from wherever, any person can track our public procurement processes,” he said.
Tolgos said the portal is an important milestone in his government’s efforts since 2016 to promote open governance after the County’s inclusion in the global Open Government Partnership (OGP).
“Under OGP, one of our main commitments was to promote transparent and accountable public procurement processes and I am glad that today, we are working towards achieving this goal,” said the Governor.
Tolgos said the portal seeks to help the County achieve more efficient public procurement management and processes, smarter analysis and provide solutions to challenges in the supply chain management.
“It will also enhance public participation through providing mechanisms for oversight and feedback of the County’s procurement processes and projects management,” he said.
The Governor further noted that the portal will support delivery of higher quality goods, works and services for the people of Elgeyo Marakwet since contractors and suppliers will be displayed on the system, while enabling the County Government get better value for money.
He added that it will also support fair competition and a level playing field for businesses in the County as well as aid in detecting fraud and corruption risk in public procurement for necessary action.
Tolgos called upon all stakeholders, particularly citizens, to make use of the portal and channel feedback that will help the County improve its procurement processes.
County Assembly Speaker Philemon Sabulei who also attended the launch commended the County Executive for the bold decision to open up procurement processes for public scrutiny.
“As public entities funded by the taxpayer, this is the way to go so that Kenyans can be able to track expenditure of public resources. We pledge our support as the County Assembly in this endeavour,” he said.
Deputy County Commissioner, Mr Julius Maiyo, hailed the platform as a sure way of weeding out briefcase contractors and ensure that only qualified contractors applied for County tenders thus ensuring value for money for the people of Elgeyo Marakwet.
Development Gateway’s Taryn Davis and Charlene Migwe joined the launch via zoom and appreciated the collaboration between the County and their organization in developing the portal which they hope would greatly improve procurement processes within the County.
Also present were County Secretary Paul Chemmuttut, Director Supply Chairman Management, Robert Chelagat, Director Economic Planning John Maritim, contractors’ representatives, media, County technical staff among other stakeholders.