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PPA Introduces Software To Check Bloated Budgets

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In order to aid and enhance proper budgeting systems for infrastructural projects, the Public Procurement Authority (PPA) has come up with new software that will ensure genuine costs for projects.

The software, Unit Cost of Infrastructural Estimator and Budget Tool is also expected curb unrealistic and bloated budgets.

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of PPA, Agyenim Boateng Adjei who was speaking at the launch of the software in Accra yesterday said “This project has come at a time where there is a recurring problem of unrealistic and bloated budget estimation of infrastructural projects”.

He attributed the unrealistic budgets of projects to the lack of reference pricing, which in turn causes huge strains on the country’s financial resources and hampered the development of the nation as a whole.

Functions of the software

The CEO said, the database tool will support a benchmarking system which will ensure that the estimated total cost of the projects will deliver value for money by reflecting realistic prices.

According to him, “It will also allow the user to vary the major cost drivers in order to analyse how changing these factors affect the cost of delivering the project.”

Mr Adjei added that, “It will inform the decision-making process of how much investment will be required for contingency arrangement in our budgeting process.

“It will also help control unforeseen cost overruns, allow additional verification of key cost items and support any justifications for project cost items where necessary.”

The Project Director, Dr Mohammed Sani Abdullai noted that the when the contractors bring their estimates government will use the software to verify the estimates.

A Public Financial Management Project

The software which is the first ever in the West African Sub region is an initiative of the Public Financial Management Project and is funded by the World Bank under the auspices of the Government of Ghana.

The Infrastructural projects that this software is programmed to access include; Roads, Buildings, Water and Sewage and Power―power consisting of hydro, solar wind, thermal, combined cycle plants, power barges, gas and other fuel plants.

Meanwhile, the sensitisation workshop brought together procurement officers, district engineers and consultants from four regions―Greater Accra, Central, Eastern, Volta and Western Regions.

They were tutored on how to access and use the software.

The other five regions which constitute the northern sector will have their session later.

Source: Grace Ablewor Sogbey/ ksogbey@gmail.com

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