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Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Senate releases bombshell, says MDAs stink of corruption

anonymous informant     8:48 PM     No comments


The Senate, on Wednesday, said Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) of the Federal Government, stink of corruption.

It claimed that over 70 per cent of corruption in the country, is perpetuated through inflation of contract sums by the agencies.
The Senate, which specifically targeted the Bureau for Public Procurement (BPP) for a thorough probe, said the agency connives with heads of agencies and private contractors to inflate contracts to the detriment of the Federal Government.
To this end, the Senate has mandated its committee on Public Procurement to investigate the allegation and report back to the senate in five weeks.
Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ike Ekweremadu who presided over the day's legislative business, vowed that the committee will get to the root of the issues raised.
He said: Ekweremadu: "Our committee will do justice to the issue. In our contributions, it is clear that we have not taken positions. So, our committee will do justice to the issue and dig deep to find out the truth about what has been said."
According to the sponsor of the motion, Senator Dino Melaye, the BPP has reneged in its duty. He said BPP does not perform or conduct mandatory post procurement audit. He also alleged that it corruptly issues certificates of no objection.
Melaye said: "Procurement is responsible for over 70 per cent of corruption in this country. To get the fight against corruption right, we must also get our procurement very correct. The is an urgent need to investigate allegations of failure to perform or conduct mandatory post procurement audit and corrupt issuance of certificate of no objection by the Bureau of Public Procurement.
"Monumental corruption is going on in the BPP. That is where we have the contracts that are supposed to be awarded at N20 million, but awarded at N200 million. It is then approved by the Federal Exective Council. This certificate of no objection is not more than the investigation that is supposed to be conducted internally by BPP.
"In with section 5(Q) of the Public Procurement Act 2007, the BPP is mandated to perform procurement audit and submit such audit to the National Assembly bi-annually.
"The BPP had repeatedly failed and neglected to perform this crucial and statutory duty particularly for conducts of post procurement audit and submission of reports to the National Assembly bi-annually.
"Based on section 61(c) of the Procurement Act 2007, the Bureau of Public Procurement is authorized to issue certificates of no objection to contracts awarded by relevant procurement entities.
"BPP has consistently engaged in under hand dealings with respect to the grant of certificate of no objection, abusing these powers to make pecuniary gains.
"We are concerned that if urgent steps are not taken to investigate this allegation and address proven infractions, the BPP is likely to transform itself from the regulator to a 'disruptor' and will endanger the entire public procurement system.
"It is time for the Senate to take the bull by the horn and ameliorate, correct and ensure that the BPP does what is right so hat social services will be available for the less privilege."
Senator Shehu Sani, while contributing, urged his colleagues to clean up the system. He claimed that civil servants now execute contracts for the government.
Sani said: "If there is any word that has become a household word in Nigeria, it is either corruption or anti-corruption. We have seen civil servants become contractors. The Senate should bring out practical solutions to clean up the system.
"We are creating a society that is enchanted. It is impossible for the country to achieve any enviable heights if the country continues in this form of corruption."
Senator Matthew Urhoghide from Edo State, also insisted that those involved in the alleged corrupt practices, be compelled to face the wrath of the law.
He said: "Agencies of government like the BPP, are subverting the law. If we want to be serious, we should be serious with this motion. We should bring out resolutions that are workable. I wonder why nobody is bothered about Bill of Quantity when awards of contracts are considered."
Deputy Leader of the Senate, Senator Bala Ibn Na'Allah, said, despite the fact that the anti-corruption war is spearheaded by the executive, over 70 per cent of recoveries are from the same arm of government.
He said: "Over 70 per cent of what is said to have been recovered, were recovered from those in the executive arm of government. Whether we like it not, the civil servants are the contractors. For the two years of aggressive fight against corruption, what can we do to reduce corruption?"


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