Akpabio Links James Ibori, Emmanuel Uduaghan, Orji Uzor Kalu To NDDC Contracts
Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, has linked two former governors of Delta State, Messrs James Ibori and Emmanuel Uduaghan, to the various contracts awarded by the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
According to Punch, others on the lists submitted to the Speaker, House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, on July 23 by Akpabio are the Chief Whip of the Senate, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu, and Senator Ifeanyi Ararume, among others.
The letter, which was also copied to the office of the Attorney General of the Federation/Minister of Justice, was addressed to the Clerk to the House, Mr Patrick Giwa, with Reference Number MNDA/HM/04/IV/158.
It was titled, ‘Some Niger Delta Development Commission Contracts Allegedly Given to Some Members of the National Assembly (Senate and House of Representatives).’
The emergency repairs projects linked to them, according to the document, obtained by our correspondent, were awarded in 2018 at a cost which range from N400m and N560m each.
According to the letter, one of the projects linked to the convicted former governor of Delta state, James Ibori, was the emergency repairs of Onoghove community road from Ajanesan to Western Delta University at a cost of N485.7m.
Uduaghan was linked to the emergency repairs of Close B, Alhaji Estate & Environs, Rumuodomaya, Port Harcourt at a cost of N429m.
According to the publication, five projects were linked to Kalu, who was simply identified in the document as OUK-Kalu (the project source),
The emergency repairs on roads projects linked to Kalu are in Abia State and the costs ranged from N517m to N560m.
The details are Emergency repairs of Ezere-Acha-Ndiokoukwu Road (N517.9m) and repairs of Amaubiri-Eluama-Uru Ring Road, Lokpaukwu, Umuchieze (N560m).
Others reportedly linked to Kalu are Ndi Oji Abam-Atan Road (N523.7m), Okafia-Ozuitem-Bende road (508m), and the Ozu-Amuru-Abam Road at the cost of N523.4m.
The cost of the 12 projects linked to Senator Ifeanyi Ararume, located in Imo and Rivers states, were not indicated in the documents.
The NDDC document, however, listed some the projects to include, emergency repairs of Umuelemai-Aba branch road, Anara-Okwelle-Umuna Road, Okpara-Road junction-Ogili Community all in Imo State.
The document comes after Akpabio on July 20, while testifying at the House of Representatives panel investigating allegations of financial recklessness at the NDDC, alleged that most of the contracts awarded in the Commission were to members of the National Assembly.
On Tuesday, July 21, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, gave the Minister 48 hours to release the names of the lawmakers in question or face punitive measures.
After the two-day ultimatum had expired, Gbajabiamila, directed the clerk of the House to institute a lawsuit against Akpabio after he failed to release the names of the National Assemblies members that have been awarded contracts by NDDC.
Akpabio in a letter that was later read on the floor of the House of Representatives by the Speaker, denied saying 60% of the contracts were awarded to lawmakers. He however penned down some names of some Nigerians who have been awarded contracts by the commission.
The House of Representatives however insists Akpabio must publish the names and not send it as a personal letter to the Speaker of the House.