Bank of Uganda has been asked to produce all procurement files relating to purchases made for its golden jubilee celebrations.
The demand was made by Parliaments Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (COSASE) in a meeting with Central Bank officials led by the Deputy Governor Louis Kasekende. The team was responding to queries raised by the Auditor General in the 2013/2014 audit report.
Away from the year under review, COSASE chairman Abdu Katuntu made reference to media reports indicating that the bank flouted procurement laws when it spent 125 million Shillings to purchase 350 pens in financial year 2016/2017. The pens were supplied by Aristoc Booklex Limited.
The purchase was reportedly initiated by the Central Bank’s Communications Department for distribution to distinguished guests during the Golden Jubilee Joseph Mubiru Memorial Lecture held on August 2 and a subsequent activity on august 3, 2016.
According to local news agency, URN, Gloria Wakooba, the BOU Acting Director (Procurement Disposal Department) raised queries on the procurement and cautioned the institution’s Secretary Contracts Committee that the branded pens had been ordered for before the procurement process was initiated, contrary to the provisions of the law.
“The tender documentation approved was overtaken by events given that the goods had already been received in the bank and the supplier has submitted an invoice for payment.” Wakooba stated in a letter dated September 23 2016.
Wakooba then requested the Contracts Committee to cancel the tender documentation regarding the procurement and that the relevant approval authority approves 125 million Shillings to M/s Aristoc Booklex Ltd, given that the Bank had already consumed the goods and needed to pay for them.