The Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) has officially asked senator Peter Nwaoboshi, chairman of the senate committee on NDDC, to refund N2.5 billion, said to be contract money he received from the agency without executing it.
NDDC made the demand in a letter dated July 5 and signed by Peter Claver Okoro, NDDC director of legal services, saying the contract was fully paid for but the commission did not receive the items.
It said the sum was given to the senator for the supply of plastic desks and chairs for primary and secondary schools in the region.
According to Okoro, the desks and chairs were taken to a warehouse along Benin expressway.
The letter read, “That sometime in 2017, the Commission awarded contracts to certain companies for the production of desks and chairs for primary and secondary schools in the Niger Delta region under the 201 6 budget of the Commission. The list of the companies is attached as Annexure ‘A’. The total value of the said contracts was ₦2.552.305,600.00.
“That the contracts were in furtherance of the commission’s education sector mandate as catalyst for the improvement of classroom and learning conditions in the Niger Delta region.
“That instead of supplying the chairs and desks to the Commission’s warehouse in Port Harcourt or to any of the NDDC offices in the nine Niger Delta states, the items were supplied to a warehouse described as Akuede Akwis located at Benin Expressway, Okpanam, before Wichetech Aluminum Company.
“That the 2019 budget of the commission also contains the following heads: a. Provisions and supply of Plastic Chairs and Desks for Primary and Secondary Schools in Delta North Senatorial District (Lots 1-15) for (Serial No. 21). b. Provisions and supply of Plastic Chairs and Desks for Primary and Secondary Schools in Delta North Senatorial District (Lots 1-20) for (Serial No. 33). c. Production and distribution of Desks and Benches in selected schools in the Niger Delta Region for (Serial No. 396).
“That despite having fully paid for the 2017 contracts for the production of chairs and desks, the items have not been supplied to the commission. The resultant effect is that the commission and the Niger Delta region have been deprived of the use of the desks and chairs.
“That, I have been further directed to demand that you refund the sum of ₦2,552,305,600.00 to the commission being the contract sums paid in respect of the said contracts within 14 days of this letter.”
Mr. Nwaoboshi was fingered by Godswill Akpabio, minister of Niger Delta affairs, as one of the lawmakers who used their position to get contracts awarded by the NDDC. It was alleged that he got 53 contracts from the commission.
Nwaoboshi denied the allegation.