Factors affecting the efficiency and effectiveness of emergency procurement in Bangladesh Water Development Board (BWDB)
AuthorSaha, Partha Pratim
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As the government agency for managing water resources various flood control, drainage and irrigation projects have been accomplished by Bangladesh Water Development Board (BWDB). Beside this at the southern and south-western part of Bangladesh there are embankment for protect the land from saline water. For maintaining the effectiveness of completed projects BWDB has to regularly repair/reconstruct its infrastructure. Each year almost 3500 million taka is being spent by BWDB for operation and maintenance of existing project. Normal repair and maintenance work has been performed mainly during dry season. During flood or other natural disaster different parts of the embankment get damaged. Flood or tidal water intrudes into the homestead and locality. It damages property and crops and becomes threat to health and safety. Immediate action is required to repair/reconstruct damaged embankment within shortest possible time. Almost 350 million taka is being used by BWDB for anticipated emergency procurement each year. Suffering of people in flood affected area intensified in case of time consuming process of emergency work. This dissertation focuses on emergency procurement in BWDB. The objective of this dissertation is to identify factors affecting efficiency and effectiveness of emergency procurement in BWDB and find out ways of improvement. This is an exploratory research that uses both primary and secondary data. Primary data (qualitative) has been collected from engineers of BWDB working in several projects through questionnaire survey and interviews. Secondary data (quantitative) has been collected from office report of BWDB. From the analysis of the both qualitative and quantitative data the major reasons behind inefficiency and ineffectiveness of emergency procurement have been identified and suggestions about improvement have been compiled. Emergency is mainly two types, sudden on-set emergencies: where the emergency is unforeseen, or the magnitude of the disaster is greater than the pre-planning anticipated or results in the destruction of the response resources or infrastructure (e.g. the Cyclone AILA). In the event of national disaster initial intervention should be much more reactive. Slow on-set emergencies: where the possibility of a specific event is anticipated and planned for. Separate budget should be ready for emergency procurement. Provision for framework agreement with short notice call off option can effectively mitigate anticipated emergency procurement. Results of analysis suggest that time is vital for emergency procurement. Extra costs will incur if time wastes during initial and implementation stage of project as scope of procurement may change with time. Currently Bangladesh government has no policy for emergency procurement and emergency procurement methods of PPR do not cover all aspect of emergency procurement. Lack of manpower and logistics hamper appropriate assessment of emergency requirement. Quick deployment of manpower at urgent location is not always possible again sometimes it may not effective enough. Emergency procurement delays due to poor reporting channel, absence of proper delegation of authority and lack of coordination. Delegation of authority should be different for emergency procurement that could effectively accelerate procurement. Too much bureaucratic system takes more time for decision making. Again reporting format is not uniform for emergency procurement, policy changes time to time in a arbitrary manner. Complexity arises for this uneven policy change and different reporting format. Efficient communication channel such as web based intranet has to establish for better coordination. Streamlining of procurement process like electronic procurement can reduce unnecessary delay. Budget constraint in emergency project is a big hurdle to overcome. Fund should be disbursed at due time for timely completion of project. Again real time efficient monitoring should be put in place to eradicate exaggerated requirement, curb misuse of government fund and enhance quality of work.