The Constituency Project Tracking Group (CPTG) of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) has sealed off a warehouse in Kebbi State for holding back 1,078 units of water irrigation water pumps meant for distribution.
An Investigation Officer in the team, Malam Sa’idu Yahaya, confirmed the news to newsmen shortly after visiting various constituency projects in Kebbi Central senatorial district in Birnin Kebbi on Thursday.
The team had visited Shanga, Yelwa, Danko/Wasagu, Sakaba, Aleiro, Jega, Birnin Kebbi local government areas, in Kebbi South and Central senatorial districts.
‘The pumps were supplied by SMEDAN in December 2019 being a constituency project for Senator Adamu Aleiro, Senator representing Kebbi Central Senatorial District.
‘These items have been in the warehouse for over seven months now which should since be distributed to irrigation farmers who are the beneficiaries in the state.
‘The seized items are now under the custody of the Commission pending further directives. We are going to investigate the reason behind the failure to distribute them to the beneficiaries.
‘The Commission, after the investigation, will ensure that those items are distributed to expected beneficiaries,’ he said.
He said that the exercise focused on investigating fraudulent procurement practices in the award of contracts for the constituency and executive projects.
‘Our other objectives are to make recoveries on projects or contracts confirmed to have been inflated or in which contractors underperformed or did not perform at all, and track contracting companies for all statutory compliance.’
According to him, the committee was set up to monitor and track the performance of constituency projects and the value of the work done.
He added that the committee was to also identify the contractual sum and contractors, unearth payments made, identify the status and persons behind the projects.
The officer said the exercise was conducted in collaboration with the Nigerian Institute of Quality Surveyors (NIQS), NGOs and media.
Reacting to the development, the Chief Executive Officer of the Active Support for Rural People Initiative (ASURPI), Kebbi State, Alhaji Ibrahim Ngaski, said that the racking of constituency projects is the responsibility of all Nigerian citizens.
‘We must hold our representatives accountable because it’s taxpayers’ money given to them to execute projects. We, the CSOs, are part of this process, and we represent the voice of the voiceless and we must report any abnormal in the course of executing these projects,’ he said.