Integrity is essentially reliability. Bidders, and all other stakeholders, must be able to rely on any information disseminated by the procuring entity, formally or informally. The integrity of the procurement process assures confidence in the public procurement system. When solicitation documents are made publicly available, the information they contain must be dependable and free of ambiguities or bias.
When reviewing solicitation documents, prospective bidders should be able to determine if they are qualified to undertake the assignment. They also should be able to assess the need for association with other bidders and the type of association they would need to form given their qualifications and the requirements of the assignment.
Bidders should have a clear understanding of the requirement, and know how they will be evaluated. Evaluation and selection criteria must be clearly stated in the solicitation documents. These criteria should remain unchanged unless there is need to modify them. If modification is required, the solicitation documents should be amended, published and made available to all prospective bidders. Any changes in the offer submission date, should allow bidders sufficient time to adjust their offers accordingly to meet the new submission deadline.
Integrity of Public Procurement Practitioners
Practitioners working within procuring entities, and other government officials involved in the public procurement process, must display personal and professional integrity. Ideally there shouldn’t be any inconsistency between the two.
Public servants involved in the public procurement process should, at all times, be perceived as honest, trustworthy, responsible and reliable. They must always keep the purpose of the procurement requirement in mind, and strive to ensure that they responsibly manage public procurement as mandated by the public procurement rules.