Procurement Data Crash Course
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1.4 Procurement oversight and monitoring for NPOs and media

This lesson will take roughly 20 minutes
One of the cornerstones of democracy is that government leaders should be held accountable for how they use their power, including how they manage public funds. Through organisations and elected representatives, the public has a duty and a right to monitor government performance and draw attention to broken promises and mismanaged public resources.
When public procurement happens behind closed doors it is much easier for unscrupulous government officials to collude with private companies, accepting bribes and kickbacks in exchange for contracts. It is not difficult for opportunistic private companies to exploit understaffed and overworked government departments.
Public procurement is, therefore, something that the public has very good reason to keep an eye on. Yet it is also an area of government activity that is often obscured from public view and shrouded in technical jargon. Civil society organisations (CSOs) and media have a vital role to play as watchdogs and monitors that rules are being followed.