The Civic Monitoring Plan

 

The civic monitoring system is crucial for Integrity Pact (IP) success. Without the civic monitoring system, the advantages created by an IP may be unrealised. The monitor scrutinises the process closely and guards the implementation and enforcement of the IP. It is the source of credibility, reassuring both the authority and the bidders that the process will go ahead as agreed, and is a source of information for the general public, building trust in the contracting process. with the creation of the public procurement portal and the use of e-procurement platforms, the transparency of procurement procedures for State works or services has been strengthened. The main challenge now is to strengthen civic participation so that citizens can be assured that taxpayers’ money is being applied in a clean, transparent and benefit-generating way for communities, given that, despite all the advances in transparency in public contracts, the great works and supplies of the State continue to generate distrust of the citizens.

Since 2016, Transparency International Portugal (TI-PT) has been monitoring the implementation of the Portuguese Integrity Pact.

Independence means that the monitor is able to perform his/her job objectively, guided only by the purposes set out in the Integrity Pact and the monitoring agreement.

The main task of the independent monitor is to ensure the IP is implemented and the obligations of bidders and the authority included in it are fulfilled (i.e. there is no violation of the IP). In order to perform this task, the monitor can undertake a number of activities:
• Examine documents, reports and all preparatory work by the authority during the bidding process, in order to detect corruption risks
• Examine and give his/her view on the tender documents before they are issued, including watching out for specifications that may be biased in favour of one or more bidders
• Facilitate, promote and take part in public hearings
• Participate in meetings held by the authority and potential bidders
• Review the questions and answers exchange, to verify the answers and that they are equally available to all bidders
• Organise, lead or facilitate meetings, training sessions, etc. where the IP is explained, and produce supporting materials
• Attend the closing of the tender to verify that the established procedure is rigorously followed
• Examine bidders’ proposals to check and compare the evaluators’ assessment and judge its accuracy
• In the case of a failed tender, fulfil all these functions again

• Review the award decision document to verify it is duly substantiated, and attend the award notification meeting if applicable
• Inspect construction sites, visit the contractor’s offices and review contractor reports to identify signs of possible irregularities during contract execution
• Review content and procedure for contract changes during implementation
• Keep contact with local communities or the end users of the goods or services contracted, to collect information or complaints about contract execution that might flag corruption
• Communicate with the senior management of the authority and the NGO about his/her findings and where necessary, to the prosecution authorities
• Receive and deal with complaints related to the IP and offer clarification
• Report on the monitoring process to the parties in the IP, the authority, the NGO and the public, following the designated process
• Suggest avenues for improvement of the contracting process, based on his/her work.

The monitoring performed through the IP does not necessarily include service delivery monitoring or quality control: including these may make the monitor’s task more difficult and may eventually lead to a conflict of interest, as in principle during the contract execution the monitor guards the integrity of the auditors and supervisors who are overseeing quality and delivery. During the contract execution stage, most corruption risks are associated with bribery and kickbacks to secure positive audit and oversight reports, so it is good to have a third party watching. It is therefore advisable to focus the functions of the monitor on ensuring that the duties set forth in the IP are fulfilled, and on protecting the transparency and integrity of the contracting process.

Lear more about the Monitoring Plan

Needs Assessment

Monitor the decisions about the purpose, economic sustainability (inter-generational equity) and environmental and social impacts of the project, as well as the corresponding budgetary allocation.

Tender Preparation

Monitor if the CA had drawn up a set of specifications that demarcates the scope and object of the tender; defines the contract’s technical specifications and selects the appropriate procurement method in accordance with the existing legal framework; prepares the tender documents and announces the bidding.

Awarding of the Contract

Monitor if CA provides clarifications to concerned bidders, the submission and evaluation of proposals and, finally the award and signing of the contract.

Implementation of the Contract

Monitor if the contractor delivers the goods or performs the works or services as agreed under the direct supervision of the contracting authority and other supervisory bodies of the State.

Final Accounting, Payment and Penalties

Monitor if CA determined whether the contract was implemented as agreed, receive and organize all the accounting documentation, process payments and trigger the guarantees and contractual penalties in case of default by the contractor.

Works to be monitored

Follow here the monitoring of the works of restoration and conservation of the Alcobaça Monastery:

  1. Convent Port and ShopThis intervention will consist in the adaptation of the current entrance room to the administrative services and ticket office; the adaptation of contiguous rooms in locker spaces, vending machines and audio-guide distribution; the adaptation of the Conclusions Room to a store and exit to the outside; and the requalification of the cloister D. Afonso VI.
    Estimated cost: € 335,631.83 – Work: € 330,556.83
    Security Coordinator: € 5,075.00
  2. West and North Facades
    The goal of this intervention is the conservation and restoration of the stonework, stained glass and portal; the preservation of plaster and its paintings; the recovery of the window frames of the spans and their railings; repair and reinforcement of the pigeon deterrent system; improved access and safety of ladders; and the recovery of the interior courtyards of the exhibition gallery.
    Estimated cost: € 718,200.28 – Work: € 702,078.52
    Security Coordinator: € 7,975.00 Project Review: € 8,146.76