Project worth over N420 billion have been abandoned in the Niger Delta region.
The Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Usani Usani, made the disclosure during a chat with reporters yesterday.
He said that on assumption of office, he saw “organised chaos and a deliberate action of disorder. There was an amorphous organisation called a ministry. But there was no ministry. So, attempting to get things in proper perspectives became the first responsibility, which, so far, is beginning to take proper shape.”
According to Usani, “it was a situation where people thought that the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs was a platform for collecting and sharing. That is the reason we had more than N420 billion disbursed in the ministry and the rate of project completion was just 12 per cent. There was so much waste.”
He categorised the projects into sectors, saying: “In every state of the Niger Delta, there are housing estates of two-bedroom and three-bedroom units. They have skills acquisitions centres. Only one has been completed and donated to the Federal University Otuoke.
The rest are not complete, like the popular East West road, which seems to characterise the image of the ministry.”
Usani, who said he would not like to refer to the projects as abandoned, said: “What we are trying to do is reward contractors who have shown true diligence in execution and should be encouraged by being mobilised further to return to site. And those who are in liability against the recent mobilisation are requested or advised to return to site until they get to the level of project execution that will be commensurable to what they have gained financially.”
On the East West road, he said: “It was first awarded in 2006. One decade has passed and it has not been completed. Yet, it is of so much economic and social importance to the region.”