NDDC vows to stop indiscriminate award of contracts
TO avert the escalation of its over N2 trillion indebtedness, the Interim Management Committee (IMC) of Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) has vowed to end indiscriminate award of contracts.
The interventionist agency said it had started negotiating with contractors over inflated projects.NDDC’s Acting Executive Director, Projects, Dr. Cairo Ojougboh, made the pronouncement yesterday during the inspection of some completed projects in Edo and Delta states.
Disclosing that the commission had set in motion machinery to halt the menace, Ojougboh also expressed dissatisfaction with the quality of some of the roads, ordering the contractors to return to site and remedy the situation.
He said: “We have said before that going forward, securing contracts from NDDC will no longer be a lottery because before now if NDDC gives you a contract, it is like you have won a lottery. It is only in this part of the world that things like that happen. But we are going to put machinery in place first of all to stop indiscriminate award of contracts.
“We are already negotiating with the contractors because a lot of the contracts were inflated. So we are talking to them so that those that are not able to continue, we will find a way to determine the jobs, while those that want to continue, we will find a way to address the matters that will come up. The important thing is that we will protect the indigenous contractors because we need to build their capacity.”
The executive director noted that a situation whereby contracts worth billions of naira were awarded without mobilisation fees was disturbing. This, according to him, paved way for contractors to cut corners, and in the process, delivered poor jobs.
Ojougboh added: “What the commission thought would stop theft compounded it because you give big contracts without mobilisation and allow for sharp practices.”
He said the era where NDDC officials stayed in office without going to the field to monitor contracts was over.
Accordingly, Ojougboh said henceforth, officials would visit projects for on the spot assessments.
“Now, we want to see what is going on in the field. We must mobilise our state offices and departments in the various states to be responsible and responsive because if the directors and projects’ monitoring supervision directors of various states were up to their task, they would not have allowed this to happen because their duty is to supervise contractors,” he added.