Q63.

Are procurement requirements derived from a national defence and security strategy, and are procurement decisions well-audited? Are defence purchases based on clearly identified and quantified requirements?

63a. Procurement requirements

Score

SCORE: 0/100

Assessor Explanation

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63b. Scrutiny

Score

SCORE: 0/100

Assessor Explanation

Assessor Sources

63c. Purchases

Score

SCORE: 50/100

Assessor Explanation

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No evidence was found that there is a published national and defence strategy; additionally, see the country’s last assessment (3). There is no strategy outlined in the Ministry of Defence website (1). Thus, it is impossible to assess whether procurement requirements derive from a national defence and security strategy. According to Art. 27 of the 2016 Public Procurement Law, requirements shall be determined in advance before any public procurement procedures are launched. Additionally, the nature and extent of the requirements of the contracting service must be precisely established and detailed technical specifications established based on standards and/or performance or functional requirements (2). It is not clear if the regulations apply to defence purchases.

As has been outlined in detail in question 59, there is only limited oversight of defence procurements, if any at all. According to Art. 163 of the Public Procurement Law, an external audit should check on the compliance of public contracts (1). As has been noted in previous questions, the Court of Auditors has only limited scope to oversee the military and the government (2), (3). In 2017, an inspector general was attached to the Prime Minister’s Office that should control public finances and procurements (4). No information could be found on whether the inspector general also controls the procurements of the Ministry of Defence. Also, no information on internal military control mechanisms was publicly available.

Since no national strategy has been found (see question 63A), it is impossible to assess whether purchases are inside or outside of it. Therefore, I coded it “Not Applicable”. Analyses suggest that Algeria’s acquisition is only partly useful for counter-insurgency or counter-terrorism, which are considered to be the country’s major threats (1). Other analysists have noted that Algeria has bought more weapons than it realistically needs for defending the country (2).

The government had not produced a white paper until April 2018 (it could not be accessed). National Development Plans (the last issued was for 2018-2022) contain strategic goals for defence and security, though no financial information is provided. Defence purchases are not made public in advance before being approved by the president (1), (2).

By law, scrutiny of public procurement including defence (except arms and military logistics procurement classified as secret) is conducted by the audit court and the National Public Procurement Service (SNCP) of the finance ministry (1). However, institutions mentioned above do not make public considerations on the consistency of planned purchases with a defence and security strategy.

The Ministry of Defence and armed forces base some major purchases on clearly identified requirements, but there appear to be also opportunistic and unplanned purchases.

For example, the presidential dispatch that authorized the Ministry of Defence to purchase 17 naval vessels from the Italian company Privinvest Shipbuilding Investments LLC in August 2016, it justifies the purchase with the implementation of the maritime coast vigilance project to upgrade the military navy of the Angolan Armed Forces. The project is part of a long-term strategy initiated in 2007 to modernize Angola’s defence and security sector until 2025 (1), (2).

However, there are also examples of purchases that have not been publicly justified. For instance, the necessity of the $1 billion contract to purchase refurbished second-hand Sukhoi Su-30K fighter jets (first sold to India in the 1990s) for Angola’s air force has not been publicly explained and was questioned by industry observers and Angolan media (3), (4), (5).

There is very little evidence on if defence procurement requirements derive from a national defence and security strategy. However, according to the provisions of Article 19 of the Law No. 039 (2016), “the nature and scope of the items to purchase are determined with precision by the contracting authorities prior to launching any call for an opened competition of bids, or any negotiation process in the case of a direct public contract, at the beginning of each budget year, through an annual procurement and contracting plan” (1). It can be inferred that the identification of nature and the scope of the defence items to be purchased is made based on the content of the existing national defence and security strategy of Burkina Faso. For example, DCAF (2010), declares that the “focus of the current defence strategy, adopted by Decree No. 146 (2004), is internal security, particularly civil defence: protection of the population and goods, maintaining law and order, and the preservation of a continuity of government’s action” (P7) (3).

There is no evidence that oversight institutions perform any scrutiny of the defence sector, as to whether its procurement requirements derive from the existing defence and security strategy. It is difficult to access to government information in general, and to that of the defence ministry, in particular (2). Besides, some items covered by “defence secret”, mentioned by Article 6 (1) of the Law No. 039, makes it difficult for the defence institutions to comply with the publicity requirement of Article 21 of the Law No. 039, and yet, for oversight institutions to scrutinize their purchase (1). This would also mean that a large number of defence purchases just escape from scrutinity. Additionally, oversight institutions (Parliament, Supreme Audit Institution, ASCE-LC and ARMP) are weak (3), (4)

Purchases are made outside the national strategy. For example, in May 2018, the government purchased 59 vehicles (1), which were not planned in the annual budget. The announcement of the purchase resulted in huge debates within the political arena, civil society, and the media, with some considering the acquisition as opportunistic. Many have argued that the country faces lots of economic, social and security challenges that need to be addressed instead of providing luxuries to government members (2). According to the Executive Secretary of the National Anti-Corruption Network (REN-LAC), the military always purchases items outside of the national strategy. “The military does not have any purchase policy or plan, and there is not an internal newspaper for the recording of the purchases they make either” (3).

It is impossible to assess whether procurement requirements derive from a national defence and security strategy, as the defence strategy is secret so it is impossible to verify how procurement requirements are derived. The strategy is unlikely to be relevant to current threats. Cameroonian defence procurement seems to be reactive and based on current and emerging national security threats, primarily the Boko Haram conflict in the north of the country.

The defence strategy of Cameroon since independence has been based on the concept of popular defence. The document on this concept, however, remains secret and is unknown even to some military personnel, making it difficult to elicit what it contains and how it relates to procurement decisions [1].

Even if this document contains a clearly defined strategy, it was produced in the 1970s and would not address new threats like transnational organised crimes, human trafficking, piracy, armed robbery at sea and the escalation of terrorism, especially by the Boko Haram terrorist group [1] [2].

Journal du Cameroon states, “Cameroon has become Africa’s sixth largest importer of heavy weapons, according to the latest report of the National Institute for Peace in Stockholm” [1].

The SIPRI Arms Transfer Database states, “Fighting with Boko Haram is directly related to arms imports in Nigeria and Cameroon” [3]. The details of each known arms transfer to Cameroon can be obtained by searching this database (2015-2018).

International Crisis Group (2016) states, “The technological modernisation of the Cameroonian army poses a question about the role it will play once the Boko Haram crisis is over. With 60,000 troops and henceforth well-equipped, the army could be too large for peaceful times, while military equipment maintenance costs could have an impact on public investment. The government should plan a freeze on army recruitment for some time – except for those members of vigilante groups who meet the age and educational criteria – and then restart recruitment at a pre-war pace once budget resources permit” [4]. This suggests that defence procurement is reactive and based on current threats (i.e. Boko Haram) as opposed to derived from a well-established national defence and security strategy.

Defence and security procurement in Cameroon is conducted in secret without oversight, often with the direct involvement of the President. No evidence could be found that the Ministry of Finance provides any oversight. There is no evidence that any scrutiny is conducted of actual defence purchases to ensure they are in line with the national security strategy, which remains a secret. However, the assessor’s interviewee suggests there is some oversight, provided by the Ministry of Finance [1] [2].

The Ministry of Defence has a yearly budget that it defends in Parliament. Once the budget has been defended it becomes law and is published in the official National Gazette [1]. However, details of this budget are not clearly spelt out, especially when it comes to what is referred to as ‘secret items’ (Special Contracts) as per Articles 71 and 4 of the Public Procurement Code (2018) [2]. As a consequence, planned and actual defence purchases are not made public, so it is difficult to know if such purchases are in line with the strategy.

The Military Planning Act for 2016-2020 (Loi de Programmation Militaire, LPM 2016-2020) was adopted on January 4, 2016. However, the LPM is perceived as a general roadmap for defence policy through 2020. It is too weak and vague as a policy document for public officials to be able to derive any kind of “clearly identified and qualified” procurement requirements. The National Assembly website has characterized the LPM as follows:

“The LPM adopted by the deputies will determine the resources that the country intends to devote to defense over the next five years in order to have an operational and professional army by 2020. The Military Planning Act will also determine the human resources of the armed forces of Côte d’Ivoire. It is the first time that Côte d’Ivoire has adopted a military programming act” (1).

The LPM 2016-2020 consists of 20 articles drafted with the help of a US-based consultancy (Jefferson Waterman International), which was hired as a special advisor to the President. The then Minister of Defence Paul Koffi Koffi stated that the LPM should serve as a “rough” budgetary tool for expenditure. The LPM has allocated a total of 2,254 billion FCFA to the different military budgets through 2020, up from the previous figure of 6.4 billion FCFA. About 1,453 billion FCFA, or 60%, have been allocated to operational costs. Another 800 billion FCFA has been allocated to investments, including procurement costs. The planned increase in expenditure is based on the need to reequip the armed forces, to strengthen border security and to fight against jihadist terrorism, as well as to cut back on the number of personnel (2), (3). Based on the broad-based nature of the LPM 2016-2020, it cannot serve as a strategy to derive strict procurement requirements from suppliers and vendors. The National Security Council identifies security needs and plans expenses but there are no specific strategies (4).

No evidence of published audits by oversight mechanisms (NA, Commission de Securité et Défense, Inspection Générale des Armées, Cour des Comptes) that would confirm that the procurement has been carried out in accordance with the LPM 2016-2020. The evidence of defence procurement indicates that urgency is often more important than oversight mechanisms or policy guidelines. As shown in 59B, the executive can disburse special funds to procure military equipment and bypass oversight mechanisms whenever a security threat arises. This was the case after the terrorist attack at Grand Bassam on March 13, 2016. Laurent Touchard, in an excerpt from his book on African Armed Forces, described the disbursement of USD 137.8 million as follows:

“A month after the attack on Grand-Bassam, President Alassane Ouattara announced the disbursement of USD 137.8 million. The envelope was intended especially for the purchase of equipment dedicated to counterterrorism, including electronic sensors, ballistic protections and vehicles” (1).

Given the absence of published audits and reports by oversight mechanisms regarding defence purchases and transactions, no evidence of oversight scrutiny may be justified.

The evidence points to an opportunistic policy that does not strictly follow the policy guidelines of the LPM 2016-2020. As a result, the purchases of armored vehicles, patrol boats, helicopters and other equipment seem to respond to immediate needs, such as the case cited by Lauren Touchard in his book on African Armed Forces, in which he describes how President Ouattara spent USD 137.8 million after the terrorist attack at Grand Bassam on 13 March 2016 (1). Another example of the opportunistic nature of defence purchases is the information cited in 59B regarding the illicit ordering of military equipment by the Ivorian Executive in 2015 despite a UN embargo that was still in force in Côte d’Ivoire. According to a leaked dispatch by the French DGSE (Direction Générale de la Sécurité Extérieure), President Ouattara ordered USD 120 million worth of military equipment through his counterpart in Benin, President Yayi Boni. (2)

“President Ouattara, who felt a real need to equip his army, faced a double threat inside and outside, and opened [a back channel] at the beginning of January 2015 with his Benin counterpart to obtain from him a paid support for an extrabudgetary acquisition of military equipment (weapons of war and military equipment subject to UN embargo)… a first meeting was held on April 13, 2014 in Abidjan and recorded as a pre-secret agreement sealed between the Minister of National Defense of Benin Théophile Yarou and his Ivorian counterpart Paul Koffi Koffi for the extrabudgetary acquisition of weapons and military equipment personally covered by President Yayi Boni for a total amount of $ 120,000,000 for the Republican Forces of Côte d’Ivoire (FRCI)” (2).

There is certainly no evidence that the MoD and the armed forces have based their major purchases on clearly identified requirements.

According to our sources, defence strategy and policy is not available to the public. However, they have confirmed that procurement requirements are not derived from defence and security strategies (1),(2), (3).

There are no particular laws for defence procurements, therefore what applies to the general government should apply to the defence sector, the wide exceptions granted to the defence sector provided for in the law and the current balance of power means that effective scrutiny is at best very minimal. For example, Law 204 of 1957 grants arms purchases all sorts of exceptions from any form of ex-ante scrutiny from the MOF or ex-post scrutiny from the CAA (1); the Public Authorities Contracts Law no. 182 of 2018 grants the MOD and the MMP the power to make bidding processes secret (2) and the president who almost always has a military background has the power to appoint and sack the president of the CAA. Al-Sisi exercised this power the only time when the CAA’s president openly questioned the privileges granted to the security and defence sector in avoiding scrutiny (3).

Defence policies and strategies are never made public in Egypt; therefore, it is impossible to assess whether purchases are planned and/or included in a policy or a strategy (1), (2).

The source of procurement requirements is not clear as the country does not have a national defence and security strategy. The MOD’s budget outlines twelve policy objectives for the MOD, but these are quite vague, therefore it is impossible to verify where procurement requirements are derived from (1), (2), (3), (4).

Scrutiny of actual purchases is undertaken by different institutions that have oversight power over the MOD and the GAF, the Parliamentary Selected Committee on Defence and Interior, the Public Account Committee, and the Audit and Tender Committees in the MOD and the GAF.

In addition, the Public Procurement Authority has the power to enforce compliance within the MOD and the GAF, making sure they both follow regulations, manuals, and guidelines; while the Audit-Service examines the accounts of the MOD and the GAF to ensure value for money.

The lack of a central strategy makes this more complicated. Some items, such as uniforms, are purchased centrally and are therefore subject to greater scrutiny (1), (2), (3), (4).

It is unclear how purchases are identified and quantified as the country does not have a national defence strategy. There are opportunistic and unplanned purchases (1), (2), (3).

In 2018, the U.S. claimed that it provided support to the Jordanian military through developing a five-year procurement plan for the Jordanian Armed Forces [1]. Whereas this might indicate that defence procurement has now been strategically planned for the coming five years, there is no evidence that this plan exists. It is also important to note that one can safely assume that Jordan’s armed forces did not have a strategy prior to U.S. assistance. In addition to that, observers have commented that in general, Jordan does not have a clear public procurement strategy [2,3,4,5]. There is no evidence to support that Jordan has ever had a procurement strategy, prior to U.S. assistance, and even if this strategy currently exists, it may be secret so it is impossible to verify how procurement requirements are derived.

There is no scrutiny of actual defence purchases, and there is little room for defence scrutiny in Jordan in general. For example, the Parliament does not receive audited reports of the annual accounts of the security and defence sectors [1, 2, 3]. The armed forces do not appear on the list of audited entities by the Audit Bureau [1]. There are no oversight mechanisms over defence expenditure in general. In the 2017 annual financial accounts of the Ministry of Finance, there is no mention of defence or military expenditures [4]. Other sources have confirmed this [5,6,7].

As has been established above, Jordan does not seem to have a national security and defence strategy, or if it does, the strategy is kept secret [1,2,3].

Auditors say that internally the security agencies do attempt to tie their procurement decisions to their defence strategy (which is not available to the public), but they do loosely (1, 2 and 3). The defence strategy has almost no details and the purchases are often not justified or they simply say that they are important for their long term goals, without elaboration.

Auditors have the right to scrutinise these processes but they are often not given the full facts, auditors said (1, 2 and 3).

The SAB cannot legally force these ministries to cooperate and Parliament is not only full of Government supporters but it can also be dissolved for no reason by the Emir, making it impossible for anyone to pressure these ministries into following the law, according to the constitution (4). But there is naturally a politcal, social and economic price to dissolving Parliament. Like most gulf monarchies, the Kuwaiti royal family’s main priority is stability, so they try to avoid resorting to this move, a member of the royal family said. The absence of examples in the media is not the product of censorship alone as Kuwait’s military activities are small and have no real impact on regional politics, and so they are not of much interest to journalists in Kuwait and the region as a whole.

All purchases are tried to the country’s defence strategy but it is extremely vague, auditors said (1, 2 and 3). The absence of examples in the media is not the product of censorship alone, as Kuwait’s military activities are small and have no real impact on regional politics, and so they are not of much interest to journalists in Kuwait and the region as a whole.

At the time of the research, Lebanon did not have a national defence strategy (1). Nevertheless, the CDPs (2013-2017 and 2018-2022) are lower-level formal documents that have a significant and similar impact on procurement decisions (2). The LAF has created the Capabilities Development Plan (CDP), the closest document to a white paper, as an offset to the absence of a national defence strategy and one step closer towards it (3). The documents have laid out LAF’s capabilities and need to professionalize their force and presented to donor countries (4). There are mission-specific examples reflecting the impact of the CDP such as A-29 SuperTucanos for light attack, CAS and ISR (2).

The GDA regularly scrutinizes and oversees procurement requirements and decisions (1). The audit bodies, as mentioned from before, have praised the level of transparency and accuracy the LAF adopts (2). A source confirmed the strict implementation of procurement requirements and decisions (3).

The LAF systematically base all purchases on clearly identified and quantified requirements under the CDP, as mentioned in 63A (1). Most of the LAF’s military equipment has been acquired through donations and military assistance programs by foreign countries (1). More than 80% of the LAF’s equipment comes from the US (2). Although it has legacy equipment including Russian weapons, the LAF is in process of phasing out small arms warsaw pact legacy (1), Lebanon reallocated the military donation from Russia that was originally was supposed to go the LAF, to the ISF (3).

The MDAC’s major recent purchases have largely been in accordance with the strategic needs outlined in the LOPM. However, the LOPM is not a comprehensive national defence and security strategy, and it does not go into specific detail, leaving a significant amount of leeway for the Minister of Defence to approve purchases that do not represent value for money. Beyond the re-publication of the LOPM in its full form on a Malian news website (it is not available on either the government’s website, the FAMa website, nor in the Journal Officiel database), no further breakdown is provided, and therefore it is impossible to verify how procurement requirements are derived.

There is clear evidence that audits of defence purchases do occur, but only on a sporadic basis. In April 2018, opposition party Parena claimed to have gained access to an unpublished BVG report, which identifies numerous cases of overspending and dubious activity in military procurement.⁶ The report apparently shows that the government bought one of the Super Pumas helicopters from Ireland, paying the 3.5 billion CFA price in cash. The audit also reportedly shows that the second Super Puma, bought directly from Airbus, cost 3.9 billion CFA, although the terms and conditions of the contract are opaque, according to the auditors.⁶ These claims were also reported by a journalist, who had also seen the unpublished audit, in Le Républican newspaper.¹⁵ Although this audit remains unpublished, it does indicate that there are at least some occasional audits of defence procurements.
When the IMF, the World Bank and the EU suspended their aid programmes to Mali following reports of the off-budget purchase of a new presidential jet in 2014, it was the BVG that audited the account (see Q16C). The BVG determined that the former Minister of Defence, Soumeylou Boubeye Maïga, and the Minister of the Economy incorrectly interpreted a legal clause that allows for certain acquisitions to be off-budget (see Q29A).⁹
The audit found that the government had spent 87.77 billion CFA (USD 163.44 million) on defence items that were not declared in the official budget.⁹ The report found that 18.59 billion CFA went towards the presidential jet, while a further 69.18 billion CFA was spent on other military equipment, primarily transport vehicles.⁹ The BVG found that the MDAC had failed to respect the 2014 Finance Law requiring it to register these contracts and submit them as part of the annual budget. Moreover, many of the contracts were found to be heavily overpriced, strongly suggesting that these acquisitions involved substantial illicit activity.¹⁰
– Lorries that can transport up to 5 tonnes of goods that normally cost 28.5 million CFA were priced at 78 million CFA in the contract.
– Lorries that can transport up to 10 tonnes that normally cost 34 million CFA were priced at 115 million CFA.
– Petrol-tankers that can carry up to 6 cubic metres of fuel, normally costing 29 million CFA were billed at 120 million CFA.
– And petrol-tankers that can carry up to 18 cubic metres of fuel, normally worth 38.5 million CFA were billed at 210 million CFA.¹⁰
As of April 2018, it has yet to be determined what happened to the money overspent on these contracts, which would have amounted to 393 million CFA had the government not subsequently cancelled them. But the Defence Minister responsible for signing these contracts has since returned to government as Prime Minister.
However, audits of defence purchases are far from a regular feature of public life. In 2016, Mali’s authority for regulating public sector contracts and spending (ARMDS) found that it was wholly unable to audit the Ministry of Defence’s finances for 2014 because of the lack of documents provided by the ministry.¹¹
Moreover, the BVG’s last published report came in 2015 (according to its website) and made no mention of defence spending or incomes.¹² The failure to publish any subsequent reports or to address the defence budget by the body supposed to monitor accountants and administrators highlights the frequent lack of transparency relating to defence activities. As the World Bank pointed out in 2017, the BVG has not specifically reviewed Ministry of Defence accounts, and only an aggregate administrative account is transmitted to the auditor when the annual budget is examined.¹³ ¹⁴ Also, Inspector general and audit mechanisms have proven to be short in terms of resources and staff, which undermines their ability to exercise scrutiny when audits actually happen.

The LOPM outlines the major purchases that need to be made but requirements are not clearly identified. The LOPM does not go into specific detail, leaving a significant amount of leeway for the Minister of Defence to approve purchases that do not represent value for money. Purchases often appear to be opportunistic in nature.
The LOPM outlines that between 2015 and 2019, the MDAC will have a budget of:
– 200 billion CFA to purchase aircraft and technical support equipment for the armed forces
– 100 billion CFA to buy combat vehicles and modern transport vehicles
– 70 billion CFA for equipment specifically for the security forces, notably for the national guard and the national gendarmerie.
– 20 billion CFA for intelligence and communications equipment.⁸
Beyond the re-publication of the LOPM in its full form on a Malian news website (it is not available on either the government’s website, the FAMa website, nor in the Journal Officiel database), no further breakdown is provided.
In February 2016, Airbus announced it had received an order for a C295W aeroplane from the Malian government, the first public record of this contract.¹ The aircraft was delivered In December 2016.²
Similarly, MDAC’s purchase of Russian attack helicopters in September 2016 was not revealed by the government, but was reported in November 2016 thanks to a source within the Russian company Rosoboronexport.⁴ The company delivered two attack helicopters to Bamako in October 2017, again reflecting the FAMa’s clear need to rebuild and re-equip in the wake of its collapse in 2012.
Another major defence purchase was reported in June 2015. Brazilian company Embraer Defense & Security announced that Mali had ordered six A-29 Super Tocano combat planes.⁶ An unpublished report by the BVG notes that the Malian government agreed to pay USD 88.7 million (51.7 billion CFA) for the six planes.⁶ The BVG shows that the Malian state had paid two of the three instalments of the contract by 2016 (the third was scheduled for 2017), but Embraer is now set to deliver only four of the six planes.⁶
When the IMF, the World Bank and the EU suspended their aid programmes to Mali following reports of the off-budget purchase of a new presidential jet in 2014, it was the BVG that audited the account (see Q16C). The BVG determined that the former Minister of Defence, Soumeylou Boubeye Maïga, and the Minister of the Economy incorrectly interpreted a legal clause that allows for certain acquisitions to be off-budget (see Q29A).⁹
The audit found that the government had spent 87.77 billion CFA (USD 163.44 million) on defence items that were not declared in the official budget.⁹ The report found that 18.59 billion CFA went towards the presidential jet, while a further 69.18 billion CFA was spent on other military equipment, primarily transport vehicles.⁹ The BVG found that the MDAC had failed to respect the 2014 Finance Law requiring it to register these contracts and submit them as part of the annual budget. Moreover, many of the contracts were found to be heavily overpriced, strongly suggesting that these acquisitions involved substantial illicit activity.¹⁰
– Lorries that can transport up to 5 tonnes of goods that normally cost 28.5 million CFA were priced at 78 million CFA in the contract.
– Lorries that can transport up to 10 tonnes that normally cost 34 million CFA were priced at 115 million CFA.
– Petrol-tankers that can carry up to 6 cubic metres of fuel, normally costing 29 million CFA were billed at 120 million CFA.
– And petrol-tankers that can carry up to 18 cubic metres of fuel, normally worth 38.5 million CFA were billed at 210 million CFA.¹⁰
As of April 2018, it has yet to be determined what happened to the money overspent on these contracts, which would have amounted to 393 million CFA had the government not subsequently cancelled them. But the Defence Minister responsible for signing these contracts has since returned to government as Prime Minister.

Procurement requirements are in theory formally derived from a national defence and security strategy. The strategy is likely to be weak, vague or insufficient to derive procurement requirements. This national defence and security strategy has been consistent since the beginning of the 1970s (1)(2). Its objectives are:
⁃ To implement and maintain territorial continuity and integrity, particularly concerning the region of Western Sahara which is considered to be part of Morocco since 1974. This claim is not recognized by the international community. There is also a ongoing border dispute with neighbouring Algeria. Both claims have resulted in military operations against the Polisario, or the Algerian military.
⁃ To prevent clandestine traffic (fuel, migrant, weapons) through the borders with Algeria and Mauritania.
⁃ To counter potential jihadist threats coming from Mali and Niger.

The King’s absolute power concerning military affairs following the 1971 and 1972 coup attempts might explain this lack of transparency, which in turn could imply corruption risks. It is therefore impossible to assess whether procurement requirements derive from a national defence and security strategy, even if a national strategy exists. There is no formal procedure in place for defining purchase requirements. The defence strategy may be secret so it is impossible to verify how procurement requirements are derived.¹ ²

NGO sources failed to provide information about scrutiny over defense purchases (1)(2)(3). Official sources failed to provide information about scrutiny of actual purchases (4)(5). Interviews could not confirm the existence of scrutiny mechanisms over actual purchases (6)(7).

As the answer to indicator Q63A explains, there is a vaguely defined national strategy. However, as answers to indicators 62 and 63B explain, there is no clear and detailed list of actual spendings, which makes it impossible to confirm whether all procurement requirements are derived from a national defence and security strategy, if defence purchases are based on clearly identified and quantified requirements, and if procurement decisions are well audited. There is no white paper concerning purchases or military strategy, and no mention of the purchases on the website of the Ministry of Finance or the National Audit Office (in the absence of a website dedicated to the ministry of defence) (1)(2)(3).

Moreover, the local and foreign press have not reported any major arms purchases over the past two years. Yet, no evidence has been found supporting the fact that purchases are often outside of the national strategy and appear to be opportunistic in nature.

Niger’s procurement needs are primarily based on strategic security concerns and their efforts to contain the armed groups that have sprung up along its borders with Mali, Algeria, Libya and Nigeria. Niger is impacted directly by the crises in Libya, Mali and Nigeria, and is facing a growing threat of insurgency along its borders. The country contributes to the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) to fight the Boko Haram insurgency in the Lake Chad and is a key contributor to G5-Sahel, which also includes Burkina-Faso, Mali, Mauritania and Chad.
Given that public information about procurements is restricted, it is difficult to evaluate if requirements are derived from a national defence and security strategy. However, due to the growing threats, Niger is facing, it is likely to be the case. It should also be noted that the new National Security and Defence Strategy (PNSD) is still under review (2) and had not been published yet, as of July 2018. The strategy currently in use for development and security dates back to 2011 (SDS Sahel-Niger) (3).

An interviewee stated that the last time the Inspector General of the Army conducted oversight of procurement was in 2016. As for the Security and Defence Commission in the Lower House (NA), it is not involved in the oversight of procurements or the consideration of procurement needs. Additionally, the assessor did not find evidence of additional legislative scrutiny of actual purchases (1), (2).   

The inspector general of the army lacks resources to carry out field missions, so auditing is not conducted to establish whether purchases are always made based on clearly identified requirements (1). It is also plausible that Niger’s authorities do not have a complete and precise picture of the requirements for equipment and operational capabilities of its personnel, which rapidly evolves in the context of insecurity and recurrent attacks. Therefore, even though significant acquisitions are likely to be made as part of the strategic concerns (2,3) actual purchases might not always correspond to exact needs. 

The procurement requirements are difficult to assess as they are subject to considerable secrecy. The National Audit Office has the responsibility to audit the following issues concerning the defence sector: “Examines and audits all payment and receipt vouchers prepared and presented by the ministries, departments and agencies. This includes overhead and capital accounts.
i. ii. Audit of all Bank Reconciliation statements
ii. Audit of Monthly Transcripts
iii. Audit of Vote Book
iv. Examination of the repayment and post audit of Pension and Gratuity files
v. Audits of procurement of arms and ammunition.
vi. Carrying out audits of armories of the Army, Navy, Air Force Prisons, Immigration and Police Audit of Stores
vii. Audit of Stores
viii. Verification of Capital Assets
ix. Carry out revenue audit
x. Carry out audit of all ammunitions by Security Agencies
xi. Carrying out of appropriation audit.”
The audit of procurement of arms and ammunition falls under the competence of the National Audit Office. However, annual reports are often not released to the public and are subject to considerable delays (1).

In theory, scrutiny is conducted by the National Audit Office. However, the reports are subject to considerable delay and not accessible to the public. There is some ambiguity about which particular expenditures are covered because major security expenditures are extra-budgetary and not funded through the usual NASS process” (1). The Head of the Continuous Audit Team of the Federal Government, Mohammed Dikwa, on Tuesday said N50 billion was saved so far through the audit of security agencies payroll. Dikwa said this in Abuja at a meeting between their Continuous Audit Team, Minister of Finance and Heads of Para-Military agencies to discuss ways to clean up the payroll of the security agencies. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that President Mohammadu Buhari had set up the Continuous Audit Team to look into the payroll of all Federal Government’s Ministries, Departments and Agencies. The team had already embarked on the audit of the Military payroll and enrolling them on the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) (1).
The payroll is subject to audit and the use of a sophisticated computerised system to track the payments versus the staff. However, it is also noticeable that there is less scrutiny concerning procurement of defence-related goods and services such as weapon systems. It does not appear that procurement decisions are well audited as problems with payroll payments are considerable when examined in detail (1). In the absence of public scrutiny about procurement processes, such problems are likely replicated there also.

The connection between certain purchases and the national strategy is not always clear. Some purchases appear to be reactions to security crises and not part of a long-term national strategy. Unlike 5-10 years ago, the military in recent years has purchased equipment that is broadly useful/tailored to counterinsurgency operations. The government has several accounts that are outside the purview of the law, which it uses to augment its spending. These include the Petroleum Savings Trust Fund (PTF, now defunct), the Nigeria Trust Fund, the Stabilization Account, dedicated accounts, the Oil Windfall and Special Debt Accounts, and External Loan Savings. Of these, only the first three were established by law or decree; the rest were created for administrative convenience by successive regimes with no clear rules for deposits and withdrawals. Auditing of these off-budget accounts is outside the constitutionally assigned role of the Office of the Auditor General for the Federation (OAuGF) (1), (2).

There is no national defence or security strategy which is available for the public; however, there is speculation that there may be one (1), (2). Additionally, procurement policies and procedures are not derived from any strategy. According to a source, the procurements procedures are bureaucratic policies rather than laws (2). There is no evidence of procurement requirements in government websites or state-run media outlets (3), (4), (5).

As established in Q8A, there are no independent well-resourced mandated oversight bodies to scrutinize activities of the Ministry of Defence according to the BTI 2018 Report (1). Further, our sources confirm that there is no oversight mechanism managed or implemented by an independent and well-resourced institute (2), (3). The only information available on actual purchases was found on international defence-related websites (4), (5). Given the lack of transparency around actual purchases, no evidence was found of oversight and scrutiny procedures either.

Purchases are usually implemented outside the national defence strategy (1), (2). The purchases are either bureaucratic in nature or politically motivated (2).

There is no national defence/security strategy, which makes the procedures in place for general procurements follow the civil administration guidelines of the PA. According to sources and the websites of the MoF and the respective security agencies, there is no evidence of a strategy (1), (2). Although there is no defence strategy, there are security sector strategic plans, co-developed with donors, that offer remarkable bases for some procurements. This strategy is used, minimally, in the bureaucratic process (3).

As no strategy covers defence and security sector procurement and purchases, there is no oversight on how procurements or needs of purchase are being driven, as per senior officials within the financial department of the military agencies. Scrutiny is occasionally conducted by the SAABC and the specialized auditing department (for military agencies) within the MoF (1), (2). According to their websites, both the SAABC and the MoF do inspect and scrutinize all agencies of the PA, including the security agencies. However, it is not clear what kind of inspection exactly they do and what time (before, after, or general inspection). Purchases are determined following the pre-set plan, which is presented in the strategic plan, but some purchases are made without reference to the plan due to emergency needs (2), (3), (4), (5), (6), (7).

There is no national strategy, and therefore, all purchases are outside. In many cases, the purchases are opportunistic, as it is politically influenced or commanders have strong relationships with businesses that need to sell them goods (1). However, as there are sectoral strategies developed with donors, some of the purchases, funded by the donors, are purchased based on clearly defined needs. The process of identifying and quantifying needs is monitored by external and internal auditors, but this is not continuously done. This is done through the Ministry of Interior, which ensures that projects are aligned with the objectives of the strategic plan of the security sector and its executive tools (2), (3), (4).

There is no evidence of the existence of a defence procurement strategy. The only information of relevance to Qatar’s defence procurement is linked to Barazan Holdings [1,2]. The company was established to enhance Qatar’s defence capabilities and investments, in addition to improving the procurement strategy of the defence and military sector. However, apart from a brief mention in the company’s aims, there is nothing to suggest that improving procurement strategy for the defence sector is on the agenda. It is also impossible to assess whether procurement requirements are derived from a strategy, as there is no information on actual purchases and procurement.

It has been established throughout this assessment that the defence sector is not typically subject to any form of scrutiny, and that its purchases are not subject to scrutiny either. There is no external entity tasked with overseeing, auditing or scrutinising defence institutions. In relation to procurement, defence institutions are exempt from the Tender Committee Law [1,2,3]. The defence sector is also exempt from Audit Law No. 11 (2016) [4].

As has been established above, Qatar does not seem to have a national security and defence strategy, or its strategy is kept secret. Due to that, this sub-indicator has been marked as Not Applicable, as assessing purchases vis-a-vis a national strategy is irrelevant in this context [1,2].

Although there is a new defence strategy within the armed forces, it is had to assess whether the procurement requirements are derived from any overarching strategy. According to our sources, procurement requirements are not derived from the strategy. The various units and departments within the MoD are still adapting and trying to restructure their work based on the strategy. Some procedures define purchases, their criteria, and requirements (1), (2).

Interviewee’s said, there are no oversight mechanisms or scrutiny over actual purchases. The consultative body, the Auditing Bureau and the internal units have no authority and are not able to access information to conduct reliable oversight (1), (2).

According to our sources, major MoD purchases are politically motivated. They are deals with billions of UDS to be an ally of major powers and buy political positions through such deals (1), (2). There are many indications that Saudi Arabia makes defence purchases that are not driven by quantified requirements. An example of this is major arms procurement deals, that are agreed between Saudi authorities and key allies, outside of the planned defence budget. These deals sometimes appear to be tied to political aims, such as solidifying and cementing strategic alliances including with allies, for example, France, the US and the UK (3), (4), (5). They can also be a form of quid pro quo for political support and/or and military protection (6). As referenced in the 2015 report, the military’s arms budget itself is dictated by annual oil revenues rather than defence strategy or comprehensive budgetary planning, and actual spending commonly exceeds planned expenditure (7).

According to our sources, although there is a defense strategy, it is no comprehensive and procurement are not derived from it. The procurement are not matched with the strategic plan(1,2).

According to our sources, there are several agencies that have a mandate to scrutinise the procurement procedures of the MoD. These instiutions include the internal auditing unit and the INLUCC (1,2). According to the decree on public procurement, public purchases are submitted to control at each stage of the procedure depending on the threshold of the transaction, the prior affirmation of the Procurement Control Commission and the Supreme Audit and Procurement Audit Commission (3). Several commissions at the level of the Presidency of Government and the Ministry of Defence are in charge of examining the regularity of the tendering procedures, the fairness, and the transparency of the procurement procedures, and ensuring the acceptability of its administrative and financial techniques (4). However, this process of scrutiny is not to check if the actual purchases are in line with the strategy.

According to our sources, major purchases such as tanks, armored vehicles, ammunition, and others are based on real needs and derived somehow indirectly from the strategy (1,2). Besides that, there are major purchases which are unplanned (less than a year of planning), which can be described as opportunistic based on the political and security situations (3).

According to sources, there is a secret defence strategy that has been developed and periodically reviewed by a specialized team from UAE and foreign contractors and experts. However, general and strategic acquisition is not formally derived from the strategy. The strategy is a formalized aspect developed by foreign experts to match the development of the UAE army and the state institutions (1), (2), (3).

It has been established throughout this assessment that the defence sector in the UAE is not subject to any form of oversight. Federal Resolution No. 43 of 2016 on the government’s procurement processes explicitly excludes the defence sector from its mandate and highlights that the defence sector has its own procurement regulations (1), (2). Evidence showed that defence procurement is partially handled by the private limited liability company Tawazun, which runs the Tawazun Economic Council, which in turn manages defence procurement. Tawazun discloses no information about procurement oversight mechanisms and does not provide a procurement procedure on its websites (3). Therefore, and in addition to the fact that no oversight body is mandated to scrutinise defence expenditure in general, it is safe to assume that there is no scrutiny of actual purchases within the defence sector (4).

As has been established above, the UAE does not seem to have a national security and defence strategy, or its strategy is kept secret (1), (2), (3). This sub-indicator has been marked as Not Applicable, as assessing purchases vis-a-vis a national strategy is irrelevant in this context.

Country Sort by Country 63a. Procurement requirements Sort By Subindicator 63b. Scrutiny Sort By Subindicator 63c. Purchases Sort By Subindicator
Algeria 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Angola 25 / 100 0 / 100 50 / 100
Burkina Faso 25 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Cameroon 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Cote d'Ivoire 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Egypt 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Ghana 0 / 100 50 / 100 0 / 100
Jordan 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Kuwait 25 / 100 50 / 100 50 / 100
Lebanon 25 / 100 100 / 100 100 / 100
Mali 0 / 100 50 / 100 0 / 100
Morocco 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Niger 0 / 100 0 / 100 50 / 100
Nigeria 0 / 100 50 / 100 0 / 100
Oman 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Palestine 25 / 100 50 / 100 50 / 100
Qatar 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Saudi Arabia 0 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100
Tunisia 0 / 100 50 / 100 50 / 100
United Arab Emirates 25 / 100 0 / 100 0 / 100

With thanks for support from the UK Department for International Development and the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs who have contributed to the Government Defence Integrity Index.

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