N1trn contract debts: No budget for NDDC if… ― Reps threaten
Unless the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) gives details of N1trilion contract debts, it is not likely to get its future budgetary allocations, the House of Representatives has said.
The Chairman of the House Ad-hoc Committee on abandoned projects in the Niger Delta, Hon. Ossai Nicholas Ossai, issued this threat on Monday during a meeting with stakeholders.
While the funds are in debts owed to various contractors handling various projects, the panel also discovered staggering hundreds of billions paid to some contractors who took mobilisation but never went to sites.
It will be recalled that NDDC management has failed to honour invitations extended by the panel to appear during an investigative hearing into the matter into the abandoned projects.
Only debtor-contractors have had to appear at the hearing to make presentations before the committee.
However, the contractors denied having a debt profile of N1 trillion in the projects that had been executed in the 9 NDDC states.
Reacting to the issue, the chairman, Ossai noted that the documents submitted to the committee indicated that many of these contractors had completed their jobs but still being owed for so long.
He said: “For contractors who have finished their jobs and have not been paid, we are going to use our powers to ensure that provisions are made in the next budget for such, otherwise we may not pass it”.
At the hearing one of the contractors Amb. Fubara Blessing told the committee that so much money had been voted for NDDC but none of the contractors had been paid by the agency.
Other contractors, however, said that most of the contractors don’t go to the site despite having been mobilized for the jobs.
Oghogho, the Chief Executive Officer of Emeni of Atom Global Contractors Ltd lamented that most women contractors are not given jobs to execute in the agency despite having qualifications to execute them.
However, the panel later adjourned the hearing to Wednesday, September 25, 2019, for more contractors to appear and give more testimonies.
The panel also expects the NDDC management to make an appearance on the said date.