Scaling Open Contracting in Kenya

May 18, 2021 Open Contracting and Procurement Analytics Taryn Davis, Charlene Migwe-Kagume
Launch, Open Data

Since the Government of Makueni County launched its Open Contracting Portal, more counties across Kenya have become interested in establishing their own Open Contracting Portals. Elgeyo Marakwet County recently launched their own portal at the end of April. DG has worked closely with the county to understand the customizations needed in order to meet their needs and has added additional features to the system.

One of these features is a prequalified supplier module, which allows Elgeyo Marakwet county to assign suppliers to specific items they are prequalified for. This functionality makes it easier for the county to monitor their prequalified suppliers and ensure that tenders requiring prequalification are awarded properly. We have also created a set of exports that generate necessary information for reporting to the Kenya Public Procurement Regulation Authority (PPRA). This will reduce the time and effort needed to create these reports, which are required on a regular basis from PPRA. 

Charlene and the team from the Elgeyo Marakwet Governor's Office, Photo Credit: Charlene Migwe-Kagume

Since we have seen an interest in the system from counties across the country, as well as interest from other subnational and national entities outside of Kenya, we have made it easier to customize what data fields, forms, and charts are shown in the system by creating a feature manager. The feature manager allows us to set up a customized instance of the Open Contracting Portal more easily. We have taken an approach of specifying certain features that should be in the shared “core” of the OC Portal code. This core includes new features and forms that could be useful for other users, while keeping certain specifications in the forked code, such as county logos and other hyper-specific changes. This allowed us to maintain a shared codebase, while not over-developing the feature manager in order to change the small bits and pieces.

We are excited about how far the development of the Open Contracting Portal has come, and are already seeing more interest from other counties in Kenya as well as interest from other countries. Our plans are to continue to support the increase of open contracting through the use of the Open Contracting Portal inside and outside of Kenya.

For more information about Open Contracting in Kenya, register for Using Contracting Data to Improve Service Delivery on May 20th. 

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