Dredg­ing scan­dal: Umar asks Saraki to dis­ci­pline law­mak­ers

Daily Trust - - NEWS - By John Chuks Azu

Former mil­i­tary gov­er­nor of Kaduna State, Col Abubakar Dangiwa Umar (rtd), has called on Se­nate Pres­i­dent Bukola Saraki to en­force dis­ci­pline among his col­leagues over the Cal­abar chan­nel dredg­ing scan­dal.

Some sen­a­tors were al­leged to be work­ing for re­moval of the Manag­ing Direc­tor of the Nige­rian Ports Au­thor­ity (NPA), Hadiza Bala Us­man over can­cel­la­tion of the dredg­ing con­tract award to Niger Global En­gi­neer­ing and Tech­ni­cal Ltd, owned by a se­nate com­mit­tee chair­man, fol­low­ing al­le­ga­tions of ir­reg­u­lar­i­ties.

In an ar­ti­cle made avail­able to Daily Trust yes­ter­day, Umar said “No mem­ber of a com­mit­tee, much less a chair­man, should re­main in his duty post once cred­i­ble in­for­ma­tion about pos­si­ble crime is re­ceived on the per­son.”

Trac­ing the ori­gin of the scan­dal, Umar said a sub­sidiary com­pany of the NPA went into a joint ven­ture with a pri­vate com­pany to man­age the Cal­abar Port known as Cal­abar Chan­nel Man­age­ment (CCM) and the pri­vate com­pany, Niger Global En­gi­neer­ing & Tech­ni­cal Co. Ltd.

He said the Joint Ven­ture was paid $12.5mil­lion upfront from the NPA with a bal­ance of $22m be­fore sev­eral pe­ti­tions were re­ceived al­leg­ing the con­tract as a fraud.

Umar said the own­er­ship of the Niger Global & En­gi­neer­ing Co. Tech­ni­cal Ltd is the same with Master En­ergy Com­modi­ties Trad­ing Ltd, which at­tempted to smug­gle rice into the coun­try quoted as ‘wheat’.

“In­ci­dents such as these are the rea­son the Nige­rian pub­lic feels let down by our Par­lia­ment. They are the rea­son why a whole lot of Nige­ri­ans take a dim view of mem­bers of the Na­tional As­sem­bly. Some even be­lieve the con­duct of our leg­is­la­tors is a ma­jor fac­tor hold­ing Nige­ria down; why it is a laugh­ing stock among the na­tions of the world,” he wrote.

“It is the duty of all Nige­ri­ans to de­mand cor­rect con­duct from all pub­lic of­fi­cials, in­clud­ing from mem­bers of the Na­tional As­sem­bly; es­pe­cially the Se­nate,” he added.

Niger Global & En­gi­neer­ing Co. Tech­ni­cal Ltd is owned by Sen­a­tor Hope Uzod­inma (PDP, Imo) who is also chair­ing a Se­nate panel prob­ing ac­tiv­i­ties at the coun­tries ports.

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