Nigerian activists ask minister to name contractors who vanished with funds meant for electricity projects

Although we are headquartered in Washington D.C., USA, our reporters and editors are working around the globe to cover what you care about. Become one of our members and help us keep our quality news free and available for all.


Nigerian activists said on Sunday they have sent a Freedom of Information request to Babatunde Fashola, Minister of Power, Works and Housing, urging him to name contractors who vanished with funds meant for power projects.

Why it matters: Despite billions in investments over the years, electricity has remained so unstable in Nigeria that many have tagged it “epileptic”, and once renamed the Minister of power as “Minister of darkness”. Millions of Nigerians go to bed every night in darkness and companies have to rely on generators to remain afloat. Abandoned by various governments and without any other option, most Nigerian homes own generating sets, but fueling them every day can get expensive, even as noise and air pollution remain a great health concern. In that chaos, many Nigerians have been asking why?

In a statement to TODAY NEWS AFRICA in Washington D.C. on Sunday, the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) said it has asked Fashola, the Minister of Power, to provide names and details of contractors and companies that collected money for electricity projects but failed to do any work.

Details should include all electricity contracts between 1999 when democracy returned to Nigeria and the year 2018.

According to SERAP, former Nigeria’s Vice President and Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, declared on Channels TV that “contractors were given some contracts for power projects and were paid hundred percent upfront”.

However, “the money went down the drain. Up till now, we are not holding the contractors responsible. People have collected money upfront one hundred percent and have disappeared; and have not even done any work.”

SERAP said “the revelation by Alhaji Atiku is entirely consistent with SERAP’s recent report titled: From Darkness to Darkness: How Nigerians are Paying the Price for Corruption in the Electricity Sector, which also revealed how over N11 trillion meant to provide regular electricity supply was allegedly squandered by politicians and contractors under successive governments.”

In the FOI request dated 4 January, 2019 and signed by SERAP senior legal adviser Bamisope Adeyanju, the organization said: “By publishing the names of the contractors and their registration details, if any, Nigerians will be better able to hold them to account for allegedly absconding with public funds meant for electricity projects, thereby throwing the country into perpetual darkness and socio-economic stagnation as well as denying people their human rights.”

The organization argued that “publishing the names will make it hard for contractors and companies to get away with complicity in grand corruption. If the requested information is not provided within 14 days of the receipt and/or publication of this letter, SERAP shall take all appropriate legal actions under the Freedom of Information Act to compel you to comply with our request.”

Read full article

Simon Ateba
Simon Ateba
Based in Washington, District of Columbia, United States of America, Simon leads a brilliant team of reporters, freelance journalists, analysts, researchers and contributors from around the world to run TODAY NEWS AFRICA as editor-in-chief. Simon Ateba's journalistic experience spans over 10 years and covers many beats, including business and investment, information technology, politics, diplomacy, human rights, science reporting and much more. Write him: [email protected]

1 COMMENT

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Trending Now

MOST POPULAR

U.S. coronavirus infections break record, hit nearly 46,000 in a single day

The United States recorded nearly 46,000 new coronavirus infections on Friday, the highest number in a single day since the pandemic...

SEE IT: Certified true copy of the conviction of Nigeria’s House of Representatives Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila in the United States for $25,000 theft

The Speaker of the Nigerian House of Representatives Femi Gbajabiamila was convicted in the state of Georgia in the United States...

UPDATED: Wife of dead Nigerian Senator Bayo Osinowo recovering from COVID-19 as son beats the disease

Alhaja Mariam Osinowo, the wife of Senator Bayo Osinowo who passed away on Monday, is recovering from the novel coronavirus, family...

Nigerian Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu tests positive for coronavirus

The Ondo State Governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, has tested positive for coronavirus, he said on Twitter on Tuesday. Ondo is a state...

Africa records highest daily number of coronavirus cases as pandemic accelerates in the region

Africa on Friday reported its highest daily number of coronavirus cases since the outbreak hit early this year, as the pandemic...
- Advertisement -

LATEST STORIES

WHO says COVID-19 economic impact in Africa more severe than disease itself as continent struggles to raise remaining $44 billion of $110 billion needed

The economic impact of COVID-19 in Africa is more severe than the disease itself, at least for now, the World Health...

WHO urges strong COVID-19 safety measures in Africa as countries reopen

As African countries begin to reopen borders and air spaces, it is crucial that governments take effective measures to mitigate the...

Daily coronavirus infections in U.S. surpass 50,000 for first time

New reported coronavirus infections in the United States surpassed 50,000 on Wednesday for the first time, with California reporting record 9,740 new...

African Development Bank names former President of Ireland and two legal experts to review ethics report clearing President Adesina

The African Development Bank has named a former President of Ireland, a former attorney general in The Gambia and a Washington...

António Guterres warns the world is in turmoil

United Nations Secretary General António Guterres warned in an opinion piece on Wednesday that the world was in turmoil.

[/read_more]

Read full article

error: Alert: Content is protected !!
Share
Tweet
Share
Pin
WhatsApp