Public Procurement Regulatory Authority-Pakistan and Abacus Consulting (Pvt.) Limited (a leading technology and consulting firm) signed a contract agreement on 8th April 2021, for “Designing, Development, Installation, and Commissioning of e-Procurement (e-Pak Acquisition & Disposal System (EPADS)”. The project is of national importance and significance, and through the development of such a robust System, PPRA intends to fully automate the public procurement processes in Pakistan, by reducing human intervention to the maximum extent possible. The web-based bespoke EPADS will encompass a complete procurement cycle, from procurement planning to the close of the contract.
Current Managing Director PPRA, Mr. Rizwan Malik, utilizing his dynamic leadership qualities enhanced the pace of the project, through effective coordination with the World Bank and various Ministries/Divisions, and played a vital role in achieving essential milestones. Engineer Muhammad Zubair, Director General (M&E)-PPRA, who is leading the project as an Executive Director, envisioned, conceptualized, and curated the whole project under the visionary leadership of Dr. Fida Muhammad Wazir, former Managing Director PPRA, and with the constant active contribution of Mr. Ali Temoor, Director Coordination & Establishment PPRA, Dr. Asim Jaleel Deputy Director (M&E) PPRA and Mr. Muhammad Khurshid Deputy Director (Legal) PPRA.
The contract signing ceremony was held at Serena Hotel Islamabad. After the recitation of the Holy Quran, Mr. Farukh Bashir Director General (HR), on behalf of PPRA Management, welcomed all the participants and distinguished guests including Mr. Faizan Mansour, Chairman Pakistan Nuclear Regulatory Authority (PNRA). While addressing the audience, he shared that Director General (M&E) along with his team, preferred to develop the complete documentation of the whole project rather than outsourcing it, saving millions of rupees of the public exchequer.
Engineer Muhammad Zubair, DG (M&E) PPRA and Executive Director of the Project extended his thanks to all the participants and appreciated the efforts of Dr. Fida Muhammad Wazir (former Managing Director PPRA) and Mr. Rizwan Malik, Managing Director PPRA for actualizing the project. He highlighted the key features of the e-Procurement (e-Pak Acquisition and Disposal) System with their brief introduction such as Encrypted Tender Submission System, e-Evaluation Matrix System linked with Past Performance Information Retrieval System, and finally, effective Contract Management System. One of the essential outcomes of the System will be effective Regulatory Monitoring & Evaluation, resulting in effective regulatory compliance and helping to combat corrupt practices in public procurement. He specially thanked the contribution and technical support of the Ministry of IT& Telecom including Mr. Faisal Ratyal DG (PMO), National Information Technology Board. He also thanked Mr. Muhammad Aslam Waseem DG (Legal) for providing his legal support while finalizing the contract document. He further said that we are hopeful that PPRA and Abacus Consulting will develop a solution that would be equivalent to or even better than those established in advanced countries.
Mr. Faizan Mansoor, Chairman Pakistan Nuclear Regulatory Authority highlighted the importance of the project and considered it as a source of enhancing transparency and efficiency in the Procurement System of Pakistan through an automated system with reduced human intervention. He further said that he and the PNRA Management were very happy that one of the PNRA officers, who joined PPRA, is leading this Project.
Ms. Fatima Asad Khan, Chief Executive Officer, Abacus Consulting, greatly appreciated the confidence and trust of the PPRA Board and Management in awarding Abacus the EPADS strategic project that held national significance. In keeping with Pakistan’s vision to transform technologically and become more competitive, the vision of PPRA must be recognized. She emphasized that the project will truly revolutionize the public procurement system, would put Pakistan at par with advanced countries, and in line with global procurement standards. The long-term benefits would include greater transparency, better governance, increased productivity, and above all significant saving to the Exchequer. Both PPRA and Abacus have initiated a long-term partnership in their shared goal of creating sustainable value. She also appreciated the important role played by all stakeholders especially the World Bank and the Investment Finance Division.
Mr. Rizwan Malik, Managing Director PPRA, in his concluding remarks highlighted the importance of the project and said that it is going to be a landmark and flagship project in Public Procurement Regime in the history of Pakistan. He believes that a technology oriented web-based public procurement system will go a long way to ensure improvement in governance with focus on efficiency and transparency in the processes, and resultantly the outcomes shall prove to be cost effective ensuring Value for Money and Quality of Public Procurement. He appreciated the efforts of PPRA Team, along with the financial and technical support of the World Bank, and other Government/Semi Government Organizations. He lastly said that PPRA is developing a robust Monitoring & Implementation System to oversee the progress of the achievements and deliverables of the Project during Contract Execution Phases.
Following distinguished guests and respected participants were present during the signing of Contract Ceremony:
Mr. Rizwan Malik, Managing Director PPRA, Ms. Fatima Asad Khan, Chief Executive Officer, M/s Abacus Consulting, Mr. Faizan Mansoor, Chairman Pakistan Nuclear Regulatory Authority, Muhammad Saleem Zafar Member (Corporate) Pakistan Nuclear Regulatory Authority, Engineer Muhammad Zubair, Director General (M&E) PPRA, Mr. Muhammad Aslam Waseem, Director General (Legal) PPRA, Mr. Tariq Javed Khan, Project Manager EPADS-PPRA, Mr. Farukh Bashir Director General (HR) PPRA, Mr. Ateeq Haider Director IT PPRA, Mr. Abdul Nabi Director Legal PPRA, Mr. Asghar Bhutto Director Finace PPRA, Mr. Asim Jaleel Deputy Director (M&E) PPRA, Mr. Ibrahim Rehman Khan Deputy Director (M&E) PPRA, Mr. Saleh Izhar Deputy Director (M&E) PPRA, Mr. Akmal Minallah Senior Procurement Specialist World Bank, Mr. Mohsin Abbas Syed Senior Consultant Ministry of Privatization, Mr. Ikram-ul-HaqQureshi Senior Legal Consultant Ministry of Privatization, Syeda Kulsume Hai, Deputy Secretary Investment Finance Division, Mr. Bilal Abbasi, Director IT Ministry of IT & Telecom, Mr. Faisal Ratyal DG National Information Technology Board, Mr. Shoab Dar, Chief Financial Officer – Abacus Consulting, , Mr. Johnson Gill, Senior Executive Director – Abacus Consulting, Mr. Naveed Hussain, Senior Executive Director – Abacus Consulting,