by Akintomiwa Agbaje
The House of Representatives Committee on Environment has emphasized that in order to stem lack of transparency and corruption, there is the need to overhaul the Ministry of Environment.
They aslo interrogated and querried the ministry over unpaid contractors who had finished about 60 percent of their jobs and a N2.6 billion was still domiciled in Nigeria’s apex bank, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and First City Monument Bank (FCMB) particularly.
The Nation reports:
Things heated up during the committee’s oversight to the ministry when a member of the committee, Hon. Pat Asadu said he was ready to shed his immunity and personally drag the ministry to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission for corruption.
According to Asadu there have been complaints and written protests and allegations that money has to be paid by contractors before their letters of contract was signed.
He said: “The lack of transparency and level of corruption in this ministry is a shame. The money you collect from contractors ensures that projects don’t get kicked off. I am going to mention names that can be prosecuted. The companies that you select that are doing deals with you are talking to me.”
“I will bring contractors who paid money and they will state whom they paid to,” he threatened.
But the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Haruna Taiye, who represented the minister, debunked the allegation against the ministry. According to him, any contractor that has such claims should bring it to the fore.
“I will like to meet one or two contractors who had this allegation. I am ready to discipline anyone that is doing that,” he said.