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Contractors Return To Abandoned N3.8bn Road Projects

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A civil society organisation, Paradigm Leadership Support Initiative (PLSI) has stated that contractors have returned to continue work on two road projects in Kano and Adamawa States awarded by Federal Ministry of Works.

Paradigm Leadership Support Initiative (PLSI), working to promote citizens’ participation in Nigerian public audit through its Value for Money initiative, began advocacy on these projects in August 2018 after reviewing the Auditor-General’s 2016 report.

According to the report, the Kano project is a construction of 21.26km single carriageway at Tamawa-Gulu road awarded for N936.1m with contract number 6273 in 2015. According to the Engineer’s letter tagged WR.14883/Vol.1/179 and dated 3rd February 2015, the contractor was to commence work on 17th February 2015 and complete same on or before 16th February 2016. The auditor-general for the Federation, in his 2016 report published last June, indicated that the contractor, after receiving the sum of N140.4m being 15 per cent mobilisation fee on the contract, abandoned the project. Honorable Tijani Abdulkadir Jobe, representing Tofa-Rimin-Gado-Tofa in Kano State, nominated it being a constituency project.

The second project, however, is the rehabilitation of 38km Mubi-Maiha-Sorau road in Adamawa State. The project, with contract number 6215 was awarded for N2.9bn with commencement date of 30th January 2014 and completion date of 29th July 2015. While advance payment of N449.6m was made to the contractor, only 1.5 per cent of work was executed as stated in the 2016 report of the auditor-general for the Federation.

The organization, PLSI, published infographic illustrations on social media and wrote letters to the Honourable Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Raji Fashola (SAN) on the need to ensure contractors’ return to site to complete the projects.

Report by PLSI on its recent visit to these project sites indicates that contractors have now returned to continue the two projects. Executive Director, PLSI, Olusegun Elemo, who spoke to our correspondent about the two projects said, “Although there’s still much work to do on the sites, contractors were seen working to move the project forward.

“While the new completion dates or additional payments made to the contractors are unknown to PLSI reporters who visited the sites, contractors disclosed to them that more milestones would be reached to justify payments made to them.”

PLSI has also called on National Assembly members to quickly review the auditor-general’s 2016 report to guarantee proper accountability for money spent within the period and equally urged the Parliament to transmit harmonised “Federal Audit Service Commission Bill 2018” to President Muhammadu Buhari to ensure speedy assent to the Bill, which ultimately, would change the game for public accountability in Nigeria.





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