House probes Mambila hydroelectric power project
The House of Representatives has begun investigations into the alleged inflation of contracts for the Mambila multi-purpose dam and hydroelectric power project to ascertain the level of transparency and due process compliance in their award.
The lawmakers resolved to constitute an ad hoc committee that will specifically investigate the process leading to the award of the contracts and identify possible infringements of existing laws in the process.
Members agreed on the position following a motion by Rep Austin Chukwukere (APC, Imo) on the issue.
A sum of $6.10 million was estimated for the power project out of which the federal government provided 15 per cent, while the contractor would provide the remaining amount.
However, said Rep Chukwukere, “while the first phase of the project was duly awarded and completed by the companies contracted for the job, the contract for the second phase was alleged to have been awarded by the then Minister of Power, whose name he didn’t mention, without recourse to due process.
“The alleged contract was awarded at the cost of $6 billion, apparently without recourse to competitive bidding,” the legislator said.
He expressed the lawmakers’ concern that the reforms in the power sector so far have not yielded the required capacity for the sustenance of stable
The House members also resolved to probe the activities of the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) and the National Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) on safety of domestic air travellers.
The House subsequently tasked its aviation committee, when constituted, to investigate the two agencies, with regards to their constitutional roles of regulating the Nigerian airspace and the airlines.
This was sequel to a motion by Rep Henry Achibong (PDP, Akwa Ibom), who said there was the need to establish whether infractions or negligence from the side of the two agencies were what informed what he called the “dangerous air transport” tendencies of some airlines.
Rep Achibong told the House that it was a source of concern that “most of the aircraft which convey passengers on a daily basis to different parts of the country are worn out, while some are over 20 years old and have been written off in the countries from where they were purchased.”
Most crashes in Nigeria, he maintained, resulted “from the use of outdated airplanes, poor maintenance of some and lack of supervision from relevant authorities.”
He pointed out that despite all the previous air crashes in the country, there was no official report from the relevant authorities as regards the actual causes of the disasters. He, therefore, called for the probe of such agencies.
In passing the resolution, the lawmakers asked its legislative compliance committee to monitor the level of compliance and the progress of the investigation for maximum results.
Mambilla Hydro Dam, Taraba State