By Kemi Yesufu
The House of Representatives on Tuesday summoned the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Godwin Emefiele and Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission, Mr. Bernard Okumagba over its investigation into multi-billion worth of abandoned projects in the Niger-Delta between 2000 and 2019.
According to the office of the Accountant General of the Federation (oAGF), total sum of N738.026 billion has so far been released to Niger Delta Development Commission over the past 19 years for implementation of projects in the nine oil producing states.
Chairman of the House Ad-hoc Committee on abandoned NDDC projects, Rep. Ossai Nicholas Ossai, asked the Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and NDDC Managing Director and other Directors to appear before the committee on Monday, 16th September.
The Committee also invited the former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs and immediate past NDDC Managing Director and other Directors to appear before it on the 17th September, 2019.
While giving update on the audit of the projects implemented by the Commission, Director of Federation Account in the office of Auditor General of the Federation (oAGF), Mr. Sabo Mohammed, described the total sum of N61.468 billion paid to contractors who abandoned the projects as wasted.
Also speaking at the hearing, Akwa Ibom State Commissioner of Works, Mr. Ephraim Akparawa Inyang-Eyem stated that 384 projects including roads, solar power and classrooms implemented by NDDC across the state were abandoned.
Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP), disclosed that NDDC did not get its approval for Emergency Projects worth over N80bn billion, adding that the Bureau does not have records of abandoned projects under the NDDC.
Representative of Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State, who also spoke at the event, Rep. Gbenga Edema, said 115 projects initiated by NDDC were abandoned, adding that no project has so far been commissioned across the state.
According to other stakeholders from the state, one of the projects awarded at the sum of N2.4 billion to Gallet Nigeria Ltd in 2004 and paid the sum of N650 million as mobilized fees was abandoned due to non performance.
The same project was re-awarded in 2009 by the second Board at the sum of N6.6 billion to Dredging Atlantic Nigeria Limited.