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FEC okays N31b road projects for N’Delta


Patricia Akwashiki

Patricia Akwashiki

WITH barely two weeks into the end of the present administration, the Federal Executive Council (FEC) yesterday approved contracts for the execution of road projects in four communities in three oil-bearing Niger Delta states.

It also okayed the setting up of the first Maritime University in Okerenkoko in Warri, Delta State and approved the renewal of the contract for the production of the booklets of the Nigerian international passports.

The Ministers of Information, Senator Patricia Akwashiki; Interior, (Abba Moro); Niger Delta, (Steve Oruh) and Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, Kenneth Kobani, variously briefed State House correspondents after the meeting.

Akwashiki, who noted the approval of the maritime university was based on the memorandum submitted by the Minister of Education, Malam Ibrahim Shekarau, on the recommendations of the National Universities Commission (NUC), said the Council also approved the revised policy on taxation, which was ratified last year by the National Economic Council (NEC).

She said: “There was also approval of a report of the ministerial implementation committee on harmonisation of taxes and levies across the federation because we have the issue, especially of service providers, who when they move from one state into another, they are also levied by the new state and also by the local council.

There was a ministerial committee and the report had been harmonised and approved by the FEC.” Oruh, while giving the breakdown of the road projects, listed them as follows: the construction of Zara-Okodia-Iseni Road in Yenagoa Local Council of Bayelsa State in favour of Messrs Eneko Nigeria Ltd at N5.923 billion; the construction of Agadagba-Akotogbo-Isaya-Ovia river and bridge in Irele Local Council of Ondo State awarded to Messrs CGC Nigeria Ltd at N15.628 billion.

Also approved was the construction of Ofagbe Udeze-Ozoro road with a spur from Ovwie to Aba Road in Isoko North, Isoko South local councils of Delta State at N6.675 billion with a completion date of 18 months and the construction of Amasoma-Egbedi Road in Okolouma Okpokuma Local Council of Bayelsa State in favour of Messrs Dantu Construction Nigeria Ltd at N2.767 billion.

Moro said FEC ratified the anticipatory approval of the President for the renewal of the contract for the production of passport booklets between the Ministry of Interior and Irish Smart Technologies Nigeria Ltd, a service provider. He said the action was intended to avoid a situation of scarcity of the products whenever there were exhausted.

Asked why an wholly-indigenous company was not considered for the job, Moro said: “The renewal was as a result of subsisting agreement between the Ministry of Interior and the Irish Smart Technologies Ltd which is an indigenous company that had since 2007 been involved in the production of e-passport and related travel documents for the Nigerian Immigration Service even before I became the Minister of Interior.

Kobani on his own said that FEC approved the revised national policy on micro, small and medium enterprises, which has strategic objective of boosting the local economy.

He said: “This time, a more holistic approach was taken to ensure that extensive consultation with all the stakeholders had to take place and they all endorsed this particular one and so as a result of that, they also came with a recommendation that will replace the National Consultative Council with the National Council for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Council to ensure that it will be a major contributor to the economy.”

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