ABUJA—THE Senate has summoned the acting Managing Director of Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, Mrs. Ibim Semenitari, to appear before it tomorrow, to give a detailed report on the abandoned construction of Shore Protection Project at Koko, Warri North Local Government Area in Delta State.
Also summoned by the Senate is a serving senator alleged to be the owner of the company, SMIEC Chemical Engineering and Construction Company Limited, that was awarded the contract on September 15, 2006 valued at N309,252,500.00, just as over N2 billion was said to have been collected and the project abandoned.
Meanwhile, baring any last minute change, the Senate Committee on Niger Delta Affairs will tomorrow commence the screening of former Senate Leader, Senator Victor Ndoma-Egba, as Chairman of NDDC and other members. It will be recalled that the Senate had on Wednesday last week, referred to the Senator Peter Nwaoboshi-led Senate Committee on Niger Delta for screening and subsequent confirmation by the upper chambers the nominees. Addressing newsmen, Senator Nwaoboshi (PDP-Delta North), frowned at a situation where a contractor would collect so such money and leave the work undone without returning the money to the government. He vowed to bring to book whoever was involved.
Nwaoboshi, who led other members of the committee on oversight tour of the project and others being constructed by the NDDC in Delta State, stressed that the Director, Legal Department of the commission must come and explain why such money was paid and no follow up made. He said: “What we saw at Shore Protection Project in Koko, Warri North, Delta State, is a disappointment. The protection project is a disaster and we are going to summon the contractor, the acting NDDC Managing Director for not doing anything.
We are going to ask the legal department to take action in recovering the money.” Asked if the committee would summon the serving senator who was alleged to be the contractor and had collected mover N2 billion, Nwaoboshi said, “ I know where your are going to, we are going to summon anybody, the senate has the capacity to do that. Even if the person is a Senator, we will summon him.”
During the visit, a community leader, Alex Ideh who told the Senators that the community was suffering following the abandonment of the project, however, asked the Senate to intervene by asking the said Senator to refund the money to allow for the project to be re- awarded to another contractor.