The House of Representatives’ Committee on Works has expressed grave concern over the performance of Contractors handling the N193 billion Abuja-Kano dual carriageway and Kano Western Byepass road contracts.
Speaking during the inspection of the Kano Western Byepass project, the Committee Chairman, Hon. Abubakar Kabir disclosed that the Committee had earlier received complain from the Ministry of Works about the lackadaisical attitude of the contractors handling the project.
According to the records made available to the Committee, the construction of the Kano Western Bypass was initially awarded to the Dantata & Sawoe in 2002 at the cost of N16 billion with a completion date of November 2005, was later reviewed to N38.2 billion, while the completion period has been reviewed four times and due to be delivered by May 2021.
The lawmakers who frowned at the failure of management of Dantata and Sawoe report on-site during the oversight function unveiled plans to interface with authorities of the Federal Ministry of Works with the view to take necessary action.
He said: “this is a Sukuk funded project and for you to be paid under Sukuk, you have to earn the certificates.
“We have complained from the Ministry that you don’t utilize your Sukuk. Whatever is invested in this project under the Sukuk must be earned and you cannot be paid if you don’t earn it.
“There are so many projects begging for these funds. If you don’t want to access the Sukuk, we can direct the money to other projects.
“We know Dantata and Sawoe to be a highly respected company and they have done well in the past. But we are not impressed with the level of work done here since 2002.
“This project is now 18 years and there is no assurance that the project will be completed on schedule. No single Director is here to take responsibility for anything and we are not happy about that. We have therefore adjourned this inspection indefinitely. We will go back and meet with officials of the Ministry and then take a decision.
“Three weeks, the Ministry called your company to discuss with you and they warned the company against their attitude to this project,” Hon. Kabir observed.
In his reaction, Hon. Isiaka Ibrahim Ayokunle (APC-Ogun) said the action of the Directors of the company was a slap on the face of the National Assembly saying: “the company is underrating us.
“That is why there is no single Director or a representative with a mandate to take responsibility and answer our questions.”
The lawmakers had during the oversight of the N155 billion Abuja-Kaduna-Kano dualisation road project frowned at the failure of the implementing agency to ensure proper design and drawings before awarding the contract to a single contractor, leading to several bottlenecks in delivering the project.
Section 1 of the project from Abuja to Kaduna (165.5km) only 40 per cent has been completed; Section 2 (Kaduna to Zaria- 72.22km) has attained a 61 per cent completion, while Section 3 (Zaria to Kano – 137km) has attained 37 per cent completion.
While addressing the lawmakers, a representative of the company who identified himself as the Project Manager, Roy Hangushi said he was on ground to take a message from the Committee to the owners of the company.
According to him, the Project which was listed as one of the Sukuk funded projects was about 59 per cent completed with about N19 billion paid so far.
While the Committee expressed reservation about the project being completed on schedule, the contractor, Julius Berger has assured that the project will be completed on schedule in May 2021.
On his part, the Project Engineer from Federal Ministry of Works supervising the project, Engr. James Zirra told the committee that only 41.89 per cent of the project has been completed since its inception in 2002.
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