Senate probes CCB over alleged N5.2b contract scam

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ABUJA, NOVEMBER 9, 2016 – The Senate has ordered an investigation into an alleged N5. 2 billion contract scam in the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB).

It adopted a motion sponsored by Senator Dino Melaye (APC, Kogi West), in which he alleged that the CCB gave an approval for the revised contract sum for the construction of one block of nine-storey building from the originally valued sum of N3.5 billion to N8.7 billion.

The Senate directed its committees on Procurement Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions as well as the Committee on Federal Capital Territory to conduct the investigation and report back to it within two weeks.

Senator Melaye said that the bureau later abandoned the N8 billion project after it had spent some N1.470 billion to initiate the process of procuring another N9 billion one.

“The Senate is invited to note that the Code of Conduct Bureau, after spending over N1 billion on the construction of the office complex headquarters with complete approval by the FCDA, with design by the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) and supervision ongoing by the FCT, has opted to purchase a completed nine-storey building located in the Central Business District of Abuja just as the abandoned one is also located in the same Business District,” he alleged.

Melaye said that the ongoing construction project of the headquarters, which was evaluated and awarded in the sum of N3, 509, 327, 405, out of which a total sum of N1, 407,263,884, so far, representing 16 per cent of the contract sum has been paid while the cumulative job done as at to date is estimated at 10 per cent.”

Melaye added: “In spite of the due releases to the Bureau in the 2016 budget, the Bureau went for the sum of N4.4 billion to buy the nine storey building.”

He said it was worrisome that the action of the CCB in the whole exercise was not expected of an institution that was supposed to protect and watch over the finances of the society by checking corrupt practices in the public service.

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