The Information Technology Association of Nigeria, (ITAN) has condemned what it calls unfair practices by some government agencies as it relates to Information Communications Technology procurement, saying that such practices may compromise the laudable efforts of the government in bringing transparency in procurement process.

ITAN observed that several government agencies now use the statutory requirement for the advertisement of government projects to extorts money from the members of the Association.

The Association in a letter to the Senior Special Assistant to the president dated November 2nd , signed by the President, Willi Anyaegbunam, and other functionaries after its National Executive Council meeting held recently alleged that most projects that should ordinarily be one basic job are broken up to several tiny lots, against which exorbitant non refundable processing fee as high as N100,000.00 per lot is demanded.

"We believe and suggest that the processing fee for any government project should not be more than N10,000,00 per reasonably-sized lot, given the huge number of our members who usually respond to these adverts" the letter added. Prospective bidders, according to the letter, are in most cases not in a position to ascertain the content of the tender lots before being required to pay these exorbitant fees. "In some cases the fees demanded make the lots commercially unviable" the letter revealed.

ITAN, also alleged that some of these advertisements are in respect of projects that have already been awarded and executed.

In view of the peculiar nature of the IT industry, Anyaegbunam noted that the above practices which impact very adversely on the ITAN members should not be allowed to continue as they will compromise the effectiveness of the due diligence process.

ITAN, according to its president urged the government to put a check on this rapidly growing, but unfair practices that may compromise the laudable efforts of the government unit in bringing transparency and fairness to its procurement process.

Commending government agencies in their attempt in sanitizing procurement procedures especially as its relates to ICT procurement, Anyaegbunam said that its members now have confidence to participate in the said projects, which have reported increased enquiries and opportunities. Information Technology Association (Industry) of Nigeria (ITAN) is the chartered interest group of the Nigerian Computer Society responsible for the hardware sector of the IT Industry. The Association caters for all corporate organizations operating in the hardware segment of the Nigerian IT industry.