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SON Clarifies Procurement Processes, Council Members Role

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The Standard Organization of Nigeria (SON), has explained that its procurement processes are in conformity with the Procurement Act of 2007 and SON Act No 14 of 2015.

While saying that the process for procurement in SON is the responsibility of the Management, it maintained that the Management under the current Director General, Osita Aboloma has diligently adhered to the requirements of the Procurement Act 2007 in the last three years.

SON’s explanations contained in a statement by the Special Assistant to Director General/Head, Public Relations, Bola Fashina, contradicts  recent spurious allegations regarding the award of contracts and role of the Council members in the running of the organisation.

He said that SON activities are regularly subjected to scrutiny by the relevant agencies of Government, while all expenditures are in line with approved budgets as appropriated by the National Assembly and accented to by the President.

Further, Fashina noted that the spurious allegations against SON may not be unconnected with those affected by some of the regulatory activities of the organization including seizures and destruction of substandard and life-endangering products, prosecution of the purveyors as well as the recent upgrading of the automation of the offshore conformity assessment programme (SONCAP) portal for regulation of imports into Nigeria which has made life difficult for non-compliant importers.

According to Mr Fashina, “Contract awards in all government institutions are governed by the Procurement Act of 2007 which vests the regulatory authority for all public procurements in the Bureau for Public Procurement (BPP).

“The organization is responsible for the monitoring and oversight of all public procurement, harmonizing the existing government policies and practices by regulating, setting standards and developing legal framework and professional capacity for public procurement personnel.

“The procurement act 2007 provides for complaints concerning processes in any MDA to be directed to the BPP for investigation and regulatory action.

“Leaderships of Procurement Units of MDAs including SON are determined and rotated by the BPP as deemed necessary.

“The process for procurement in SON is the responsibility of the Management under the leadership of the Director General as part of the day to day administration of the organization as provided in the SON Act No 14 of 2015.

“The SON Management under the current Director General, Osita Aboloma has diligently adhered to the requirements of the Procurement Act 2007 in the last 3years.

“The role of the Governing Council of SON is to among others advise the Federal Government generally on the National policy on Standards, standards specification, quality control and metrology, designating establishing and approving standards and determining the overall policy of SON.

“Council members are on part time and not involved in the day to day administration of SON as provided in the organisation’s enabling Act.

“Suffice to state that the Chairmanship of the SON Governing Council and some other parastatals were vested in the Minister, Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment (FMITI) under the prerogative of the President to insulate the organisations from political pressures and allow them focus on delivering on their respective mandates.

“It should be recalled that the former Minister, FMITI did clearly warn members of Boards and Governing Councils of Government Parastatals during the inauguration to stay clear of day to day running of such organizations.”

 

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