Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Mr Godswill Akpabio, has linked some members of the National Assembly to some contracts awarded by Niger Delta Development Commission.
Akpabio, however, did not state if the lawmakers were directly awarded the contracts or they nominated the projects under their Zonal Intervention Projects, also known as constituency projects.
Former Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on NDDC, Mr Nicholas Mutu, who represents Bomadi/Patani Federal Constituency of Delta State, is among those linked by the minister with contracts.
The minister listed Mutu’s name against 74 projects, including various emergency road projects in Delta, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa and Rivers states.
Economic and Financial Crimes Commission had on February 3, 2020, arraigned Mutu before Ms Folashade Giwa-Ogunbanjo of Federal High Court in Abuja for alleged abuse of office and fraud involving about N320m.
Akpabio also linked Chairman of Senate Committee on Niger Delta Affairs, Mr Peter Nwaoboshi (Delta-North), with 53 projects, which included emergency repairs of Asue Street, Owa Phase 2; ldumuogbe Road via Ojemaye; Otolokpo College Road, Otolokpo; and the Police lshu Ani Ukwu Road, Issele Uku.
Other lawmakers that Akpabio listed projects against are Mr Matthew Urhoghide (Edo-South), six; Mr James Manager (Delta-South), six; Mr Samuel Anyanwu (Imo-West, 8th Senate), 19; and others simply identified as Ondo and Edo Reps.
The minister, however, did not provide the cost of the projects listed against the lawmakers’ names, while the cost of contracts given to non-lawmakers had costs of various projects attached to them.
Our correspondents also observed that contracts listed against the names of the lawmakers were not up to 60 per cent of the 266 on the list provided by Akpabio.
Non-National Assembly members are also on the list.
It was further observed that the minister copied to Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr Abubakar Malami.
The House had on Thursday resolved to sue Akpabio for alleged perjury and defamation of the parliament.
Akpabio had last Monday, while appearing before the House Committee on NDDC during an investigative hearing on the alleged illegal spending and mismanagement of funds, alleged that members of the National Assembly were awarded 60 per cent of contracts by the commission.