Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has called for competitiveness and transparency in awarding of contracts.
Speaking at a procurement conference in Accra on Monday, he expressed concern over the high cost of projects under the previous administration which he said is affecting the national budget.
Dr. Bawumia expressed disappointment over the inflation of the cost of projects, which he said seriously affected the national budget, and urged government appointees to ensure value for money.
“A comparative analysis, for instance, revealed that better quality hospitals are currently built at more cost effective rates in places like India than in Ghana.
“We should therefore be able to set maximum cost for constructing district hospitals or a six unit classroom block as a guide to the procurement process.”
He expressed shock at the $25 million cost of an 80-bed district hospital put up between 2014 and 2016 and cited a 150-bed hospital funded by the African Development Bank over the same period at the cost of $3 million.
The Vice President alluded to a 1,000-bed hospital constructed by businessman Aliko Dangote at $20 million.
Minister of Finance Ken Ofori-Atta, who was also present at the conference, called on chief directors at various ministries to scrutinize projects before approving them.
Senior Minister Yaw Osafo Marfo urged the Finance Ministry to ensure timely release of funds to ensure value for money.
“If between two or three officers, assuming the money is available and they delay in the processing between Ministry of Education and Ministry of Finance, it means for one month, on a project of that size, you are adding one-twelfth of the 2.5 million, and you are adding GH¢208,000 for $1,000. So how much do you earn? Delays cost money to Ghana,” he stressed.
The procurement conference was to set standards for proposed government projects, amidst other discussions centered on conducting risk assessment for various contracts.