Malawi Institute of Procurement and Supply (Mips) newly-elected president Alinafe Banda Malisawa has advised procurement professionals to desist from using shortcuts in procurement of goods and services.
In her speech at the 10th Mips annual lakeshore conference in Mangochi on Friday and made available to The Nation, she said the procurement profession is “very tempting and risky and it is very easy to find yourself in trouble”.
“The challenges in procurement are the same. Some want to push for shortcuts, but we should always make sure that we protect the profession,” said Malisawa, who is also head of procurement at Malawi Parliament.
She urged procurement professionals not to relax, but ensure that they are on top of the game.
“We must guard the profession jealously. It is a strategic function for any organisation,” said Maliswa.
This year’s conference focused on micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) based on the theme Unlocking the Growth of MSMEs in Malawi: The Legal and Financial Challenges Under Microscope.
In his speech, Public Procurement and Disposal of Assets Authority director general Elias Hausi said despite government constituting the largest market for goods, services and infrastructural works, MSMEs have not had a fair share of this market offered by government through public procurement.
He said: “This is due to various reasons, including enabling legislation, technical and Flames on edgefinancial capacity.
“Without appropriate financial and technical muscle, MSMEs, which are dominated by Malawian entrepreneurs are forced to tussle with well established, experienced and well-resourced large enterprises.”
Guest of honour at the conference, Judge Zione Ntaba of the High Court of Malawi Zomba Registry, said MSMEs have the power to propel the country’s socio-economic development.
She said small businesses face a number of challenges to compete for government contracts.
This year’s conference was held at a time some sections of the public have expressed displeasure with the preferential treatment provision provided under Section 44 (10) of PPDA Act that requires procuring and disposing entities to award 60 percent of all contracts under national competitive bidding to indigenous black Malawians.