Public procuring entities
Kenya has enhanced mechanisms for implementation of Open Governance initiatives through issuance of Executive Order No. 2 of 2018 that came to effect from 1st July, 2018. It directs all Public Procuring Entities to maintain and continuously update and publicise complete information of all tenders awarded, a comprehensive list of all registered suppliers, contractors and consultants.
The commitment is specific as it targets public procurement entities to ensure publication of contract awards and tender notices by procuring entities. While the commitment is an existing measurement of countering corruption, the Kenyan government commits to maintain and continuously update and publish information on all public tenders, contractors and suppliers. This is in line with upholding the principles of open and transparent government, which Kenya endorsed in the Open Government Partnership (OGP).
The commitment is sufficiently measurable as it has clear indicators and milestones to achieve. These include the development and launch of the public procurement information portal, an online platform that is regularly updated with information on the publication of contract awards and tender notices by public procuring entities.
This commitment is a reiteration of a similar commitment made at the London Anti-Corruption Summit in 2016 and was later actualised through the issuance of executive order 2 of 2018. At the time of this commitment, there were ongoing efforts to digitise public procurement processes through the integrated finance management information system (IFMIS)1 though no procurement data was proactively disclosed. The commitment aimed to embed more transparency in public procurement processes and eventually minimise procurement malpractice.
There currently exists a public portal (tenders.go.ke) launched in 2019 that contains information of tenders awarded, details of suppliers, contractors and consultants awarded these tenders plus how the tender award decision was made. Progress in this commitment is ongoing as each day there are more procuring entities publishing information on the portal.
Challenges to effective commitment implementation
Adherence to the executive order has been a continuous process as procuring entities have different capacities to comply with the executive order. The Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) is charged with the mandate to oversee compliance. Notable challenges in implementation of this commitment include a lack of sanctions against procuring entities that do not comply with the order. Additionally, the PPRA decries the lack of adequate staff to allow it to fully execute its mandate.2
Opportunities to accelerate commitment implementation
The commitment was made previously in the London Anti-Corruption Summit and is in line with national government efforts to strengthen public procurement systems through greater transparency and digitisation of various processes. It is also in line with global priorities aimed at opening up government processes, as evidenced by initiatives such as the Open Government Partnership, among others.
The current Kenya Open Government Partnership (OGP) National Action National Plan(NAP) III ends in December 2020, and the process of creation of NAP(IV) is underway. To sustain this commitment, the new plan should allow monitoring to make sure the various procuring entities comply.
Executive order 2 of 2018 should be revised to include sanctions against non-compliant entities
Amend the Public Procurement and Asset Disposal Act , 2016 and attendant regulations to incorporate the contents of the executive order as a means to ringfence the legal framework
Increased budgetary allocation to the PPRA to increase their staff for proper oversight over procuring entities
- Open Government Partnership, The Republic of Kenya Open Government Partnership National Action Plan II, 1 July 2016, https://www.opengovpartnership.org/wp-content/uploads/2001/01/Kenya_AP2_2016_0.pdf1 July 2016
- Public Procurement Regulatory Authority, Annual Report for Year ended 30 June 2018, http://ppra.go.ke/annual-reports/2018