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BPP GIVES FRESH CONDITION TO MDAS FOR CONTRACT APPROVAL

By NBF News
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The Bureau for Public Procurement (BPP) has given fresh conditions to all Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), mandating them to comply with the Industrial Training Act of remitting one percent of its personnel cost for Student Industrial Work Experience Scheme (SIWES) fund, for getting contract approval

The provision orders the MDAs to remit one percent of its personnel cost for SIWES fund to Industrial Training Fund (ITF) and any MDA that failed to do so, would not get any contract approval from BPP, before any contract is awarded that one percent has to be paid.

This is sequel to a circular issued by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, (SGF) Pius Anyim that all Federal Government agencies shall comply with the statutory provisions for the ITF Act with regards to section 6, 1 to 13,

To this end, the ITF has sought for the assistance of BPP to make it mandatory for all MDAs when advertising their contracts to ensure that ITF's contribution was included as one of its conditions.

BPP has said it was ready to implement the act to the letter, stressing that as a federal institution, it would make sure that all laws of the land were obeyed

'As a federal institution we are here to make sure that all laws of the land are obeyed,' Emeka Eze of BPP stated.

The ITF Act states that every employer having five or more employee in its establishments and having less than five employees but with a turnover of N50 million and above per annum, shall, with respect to each Calendar year and on proscribed date give to the ITF one percentage of its total earnings.

Longmas Wapmuk, Director General of ITF at a one day stakeholders meeting with the Bureau for Public Procurement, the Manufacturing Association of Nigeria and the Centre for Management Development in Abuja, stating that all MDAs must ensure compliance.

He said, 'The Secretary to the Government of the Federation, (SGF) Pius Anyim in a circular stated that all federal government agencies shall comply with the statutory provisions for the ITF Act with regards to section 6, 1 to 13.

The DG said the money if remitted 'will be used to establish 37 skills acquisition centres all over the country, we will have one in each state of the federation and one in the FCT.

'Each of these centres will run programmes in 15 general trade areas, like plumbing, electrical, automotive etc all over the country and then there will be four specific trade that will be specific to each state of the federation in addition to a programme in management and general studies.

'Each of these centres will be running 21 programmes and we believe that within two years of the existence of these centres we will be able to produce enough manpower for the need of the Nigerian economy.

'The total number of the centre's are 37,each of them will be running 21 programmes and each programme will have an intake of 25 persons and so we will be having admission for cash institution for about 500 new students and then for employment purposes itself, we will be having at least two instructors in each of the programmes and so we believe that we will be able to generate employment for about 18,000 to 20,000 people at the take-off of these centres and then additionally, we intend to set up centre's for advance skills learning for employments in the six geopolitical zones.

'They will be running programmes in about 45 trade areas and will be offering opportunities for practical attachment for graduates or students of institutions of higher learning because we will be having state of the art equipment's that will not be available in the Universities and so we will be achieving two thing, one providing opportunities for practical for students of tertiary institutions those who are doing technical courses and secondly, also providing opportunities for training for skills that people want to use to exist.

'Many people have gone to the Universities and studied courses that may not be useful to them so these centres will provide opportunity for them to come for about six months or one year to a new trade to do whatever they want to do after graduation.

So this is our plan and we have sent it to the Ministry of Trade and Investment for approval and subsequent approval by the Federal Executive Council. We have not been able to meet up with our mandate of producing adequate manpower for the economy because of inadequate resources and so we propose to government to amend our Act to make it possible for ITF to be efficient in collecting training contributions so that we will have enough to establish industrial training centres all over the country,' he said.

Wapmuk said the Act was signed last year by President Goodluck Jonathan after it was passed last year by the National Assembly, the Secretary to the Government issued a circular on the 4th of October 2011 asking all MDAs to ensure that the objectives for amending the law is achieved.