Leadership Centre DG in trouble over breach of Procurement Act, demotes officer who exposed the act

Leadership Centre DG in trouble over breach of Procurement Act, demotes officer who exposed the act

The Director General of the Citizenship and Leadership Centre (CLTC) Mr. Jonah Bawa is currently in trouble over allegations that he breached Federal Government’s Procurement Act by single-handedly ordering that a company that won a contract bid be replaced by another company of his choice after the Centre’s Tenders Board had completed the bidding processes and closed the book. CLTC is an agency under the Federal Ministry for Youth Development.
A story published by Leadership Newspaper of Tuesday September 29, 2020 and titled, ‘Former Assistant Director Protests Demotion, Writes Board of CLTC,’ had that trouble started for Bawa following his demotion of the Centre’s Head of Procurement Unit, Alhaji Usman Fufuri Ibrahim for pointing out the infraction, taking him down from the position of Assistant Director to Chief Procurement Officer (Grade Level 15 to Grade Level 13) as well as deployed him to another unit.
The paper which said it cited a petition written by Usman Fufuri through a source in one of the several offices he copied, including all members of the governing board of the Centre, senate committee on procurement, Senate Committee on Youth and Sports Development, the Minister for Youths and Sports Development, Chairman ACTU and office of the Chief of Staff to the President, among many others.
It said that the case which has triggered tension at CLTC headquarters in Abuja currently happened during the 2019 bidding but that Alhaji Usman Fufuri Ibrahim was demoted a few weeks ago.
Following the publication by the newspaper and our further inquisition, a source told us that the Tenders Board had, after following all due processes, awarded contract for a training workshop for Youths against Drug Abuse, to Nosdale Nigeria ltd worth N40million that Bawa even approved and paid mobilization payment of 15% to NOSDALE as well as commissioned the job. But that while NOSDALE was busy executing the contract, the Director General invited the Head of Procurement, Usman Fufuri and requested that the Company be replaced with another company brought by Bawa named New Things Nig. Ltd to which the Procurement officer refused and pointed out to the Director General that such would breach Section 17 and 20 of the 2007 Procurement Act.
The source said that “But Bawa refused and threatened to punish Fufuri if he refused to do his bidding. Alhaji Usman Fufuri therefore filed away the original document where the Tenders Board approved the contracts, wrote a new memo to Bawa replacing NOSDALE WITH Bawa’s choice company, New Things Nig Ltd which was his crony Company. When matter became known to both management and staff of the Centre, Bawa quickly summoned management meeting, put the blame on the Procurement Officer, Fufuri and got them to support his demotion,” the source said.
The source said that while Bawa was taking the action, he did not know that the original copy of the initial Tenders Board’s contract approvals were with Fufuri who later petitioned the Board of Directors of the Centre.
Leadership newspaper had quoted a letter dated 13th September 2020 and addressed to the Chairman, Governing Board, through the Chairman, Board Establishment Committee of CLTC, in which Usman Fufuri Ibrahim said he was not given fair hearing by Bawa and his management before he was demoted by two grade levels and requested for an opportunity to state his own side of the story.
We learnt further that following the petition, the Board of the Centre conveyed a meeting and invited the Procurement Officer, Fufuri; and that the members of the Board were shocked as they listened to Fufuri who stated his own side of the story and showed them the two different approvals by Bawa..
The source also narrated how in an earlier case which led to Bawa’s arrest in 2019 by the ICPC, he was alleged to have masterminded the defrauding of the Centre through the payment of N40Million as rent for the Centre’s national secretariat located at N1075 Joseph Gomwalk Street, Gudu District, Abuja.
It was alleged that while Bawa was the Director of Administration, he scouted for and got the accommodation for the use of the centre and was responsible for a deal whereby CLTC pays annual rent of N40Million instead of actual amount of N20Million.
“They signed two agreements for the same property. The real one was for N20Million while the other was for N40Million. They also issued them with two different receipts for that purpose. Last year, the Centre has prepared voucher to pay N40Million but was delayed by paucity of funds before the matter was busted and he was Bawa was arrested,” the source stated.
But source also lamented that Bawa is untouchable because he came to CLTC from ICPC, adding that his former colleagues at the anticorruption agency are always there to cover him up.
“The matter of the rent is still pending at the ICPC. There is nothing they are doing about it. Even this one, will go the same way. Is this not Nigeria?” the source queried.

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