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Wike to FG: Most of your budgetary allocations promote corruption

By Obinna Nwaoku, Port Harcourt
12 December 2021   |   4:24 am
Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has told the Federal Government that it inadvertently promotes corruption, whenever it allocates paltry sums in its yearly budget for a project...

[FILES] Wike. Photo/https://www.facebook/GovernorNyesomEzenwoWikeCON/

Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has told the Federal Government that it inadvertently promotes corruption, whenever it allocates paltry sums in its yearly budget for a project, instead of the entire money required to complete such projects within the agreed time.

The governor made the observation, while speaking at the inauguration of the GRA Junction Flyover project that was performed by Mike Agbedor Ozekhome, SAN, yesterday, in Port Harcourt.

Wike, in a statement signed by his media aide, Kelvin Ebiri, said such practice encourages variation of the value of the projects, elongates the time specified to complete such projects, and most often, leads to abandonment.

The statement partly read: “I don’t like the word variation. It is not in my dictionary.”

That is where you see corruption. How can you award a job of N60b, then in the budget of the year, you put N2b. What kind of contract is that? Why will there not be a variation? That job will drag for the next 10 years, and that is the problem we have in our contract execution.”

Wike explained that in such situations, the contract value gets affected by inflation, and there is a likelihood of adjustment of the items, which eventually breeds corruption.

He pointed out that such culture is not encouraged in Rivers State under his administration, and that there is no rationale for him to spend four years doing a particular project.

“Now, if you’re putting N2b each year, that means in 10 years, it will be N20b. So you cannot finish the project in 20 years. And then, looking at the inflation trend, every year, the contractor will put variation. Why? Because the price of things has gone up. So, they’ll put variation and at the end of the day, the job will not be N60b. It will shoot up to N80b…”

The governor vowed not to abandon the Trans-Kalabari road, despite attempts by hoodlums who kidnapped workers handling the multi-billion Naira project.

Performing the project inauguration, Ozekhome said Governor Wike has, through the execution of numerous infrastructural projects, demonstrated transparency and accountability in the management of the resources of Rivers State.