Reps to probe over 20,000 FG abandoned projects

The House of Representatives is set to beam its searchlight on the over 20, 000 abandoned infrastructural projects of the Federal Government since 1999 to date.

The abandoned projects, said to be worth billions of naira, were said to have been abandoned by contractors after government had paid them over 50 per cent of the costs.

The resolutoon of the House followed the adoption of a motion by a member, Francis Uduyok at plenary on Wednesday.

The lawmakers, while adopting the motion unanimously, resolved to set up an ad hoc committee to “investigate abandoned projects from 1999 till date, the cost of award, period of award, the state of completion and constraints and report back within three months for further legislative action.”

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Uduyok, while moving the motion, said: “The House notes the alarming number of projects which were awarded to contractors by the Federal Government’s agencies, parastatals, ministries, commissions and boards from 1999 that have been abandoned.

“A large number of those projects, estimated to be over 20,000, have received advanced payments of not less than 50 per cent and other payments, which in total amount to billions of naira. Some of those abandoned projects include important establishments such as dams, hospitals, buildings, bridges, steel companies; and access roads like the East-West Road awarded in 2006 and yet to be completed after more than a decade.”

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He further noted that the abandoned projects had become pipes that drain the Federal Government’s funds “due to the inflationary rate that obtains when the government decides to revive the projects many years after they were awarded.”

“Even though this trend has been in vogue, there is the need to change it, if the nation is to have a meaningful development in terms of infrastructure and social services. Some of those abandoned projects are currently being occupied by hoodlums and miscreants who use them as abodes to plan their nefarious activities.

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“The House believes in the vision of the current administration to move the nation forward, there is the need to factor into future budgets, funds to ensure the completion of those projects”, Uduyok said.

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