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Kogi bidding process transparent, say investors

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Investors who got the Bureau for Private Public Partnership (BPPP) request of no objection from the Ministry of Environment, have commended the Kogi State Government for its transparency in the bidding process.

The State Government had opened bidders’ conference for pre-qualified investors to undertake PPP projects in the State.

One of the investors, Suleiman Babanawa, commended the Government for giving every investor a level playing ground.

He said: “Initially, I was not interested because I thought it was going to be business as usual that those projects had already been awarded before advertising them.

“We are however proved wrong because we have been going through the normal process since we applied, we are happy that confidence is being restored which is good for Kogi State.”

Another investor, Mohammed Ibrahim, said he was confused at the initial stage because the transparency brought to bare was too good to be true considering his previous experience with past administrations.

He said every sincere investor would be happy and eager to work with the State because there is no rigmarole with a well informed PPP office that is coordinating everything.

An Officer in the Ministry of Environment, Abolaji Femi, said the bidding process was smooth due to the cooperation of the investors, coupled with commitment of the State Government.

The Director General, Kogi State BPPP, Bob Achaya, disclosed that the bidders’ conference, which aligned with international best practices, was the first of its kind in the history of the state.

According to him, “Kogi State has started the PPP implementation and we are having PPP procurement bid opened to be followed by technical and financial proposals in fortnight.

“We have previously received Expression of Interest (EOI) from investors through advertisement, and opened a bid which allows us to prequalified companies that are interested in those projects.

“The projects include Confluence Beach Hotel; Lokoja Mega Bus Terminal; Mega World Class Business Mall; Consolidated Billings, Environmental Revenue Levy; and Sanitary Inspection of Premises, among others.

“Today, the PPP office is engaging the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, which by its mandate procure every PPP in the state, we had earlier received seven PPP request of no objection from the ministry. After the review, we had only three out of the seven with no objection for advertisement while others went through the formal conventional procurement process,” Achaya said.

The director named the three categories of bids as consolidated billings, sanitary inspection of premises, and environmental revenue levy, adding that a bid fee was fixed at N350,000 per investor.

“This bidders conference is also to intimate the bidders with issues arising, challenges, prospects and stages that will lead to the final close of the deal. The close of the deal is concluding a business with private sector proponents who will manage and operate whatever scheme agreed upon.

“We are doing this today because the investors have been prequalified and we are now discussing with them on how fast we want them to submit the technical and financial proposals. This is what the bidding conference seeks to achieve and I think we have achieved that because the bid fee was unanimously agreed upon by the bidders.”
It was agreed that within two weeks the investors will submit the technical and financial proposals which will be followed by other formalities.


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