President David Granger: Honourable Prime Minister [Moses Nagamootoo], Vice President Khemraj Ramjattan; Ministers of the Government, Members of the Public Procurement Commission, ladies and gentlemen:
The Constitution of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana mandates the establishment of the Public Procurement Commission. The Constitution provides as has been quoted before:
“There shall be a Public Procurement Commission, the purpose of which is to monitor public procurement and the procedure therefore in order to ensure that the procurement of goods and services and the execution of works are conducted in a fair, equitable, transparent, competitive and cost effective manner according to law and such policy guidelines as may be determined by the National Assembly.”
The Constitution of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana is sacrosanct. Its provisions must be observed and applied scrupulously. Its authority must never be diminished or ignored. The establishment of the Public Procurement Commission represents respect for the supreme law of the land. The National Assembly of Guyana and, particularly, the Public Accounts Committee, bear responsibility for the selection of the members of this Commission. The bi-partisan process of selection is a demonstration that, however intractable partisan differences might seem, the bases for political agreement and consensus on matters of national interest should always be affirmed.
The Government of Guyana iterates its commitment to the principles of accountability and transparency in the conduct of public business. The establishment of the Commission evinces the importance of ensuring equity and fairness in public procurement. I congratulate you – the members of the Public Procurement Commission – and urge you all to be faithful to the oath you have just sworn. I charge you with upholding the constitutional duty of the Commission in being independent, impartial and fair.
Congratulations and thank you.