Those of us around Jibiya in Kastina State and Itakpe in Kogi State interested in seeing the completion of the construction of National Freight Office Building at Jibiya and construction/provision of relevant facilities along the Railway Station Buildings in Itakpe – Ajaokuta – Warri railway stations are unhappy. The reason is simple: vested interests in the Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP) and the Federal Ministry of Transport who are bent on frustrating President Muhammadu Buhari’s resolve to see that development of these facilities get to Nigerians living around these axis have continued their vicious ploys unabated. It is particularly nauseating to realise that they have carried their mischievous acts of sabotage to the home state of President Buhari, in the case of the Jibiya projects situated in Kastina State.
Recall that we had commented earlier in Daily Trust, Wednesday, May 9, 2018 and THISDAY, Thursday, May 10, 2018 on the dishonesty of these vicious elements within the purview of the Federal Ministry of Transport who have sworn that these projects in which their processes commenced in 2016/2017 but cancelled because of activities of these interests and reintroduced in 2018 as published in the Tenders Journal of August 21 – Sunday September 3, 2017 in line with Federal Ministry of Transport’s call for submission of Tender by contractors will not see the light of day.
We are aware that the Bureau of Public Procurement as a government agency is empowered by law to correct abnormalities that come from government parastatals and ministries in the areas of procurement but from my checks, we can reliably state that elements within BPP and the Federal Ministry of Transport are frustrating the completion of these projects and working in blatant disregard to the directive of the president to see to the completion of these projects.
Recall also that the Minister of Transport, Rotimi Amaechi and his counterpart at the Ministry of Information, Alh. Lai Mohammed recently embarked on tours to some ongoing railway projects across the country in which they both made repeated declarations on how serious the present administration is to ensuring that the set completion/launching dates for the ongoing projects are realised. In fact, the ministers while briefing the media after visiting the Lagos – Ibadan railway projects stated categorically that work will be completed this year while full operations will commence January next year. The reassurance became necessary following fears that the set date for completion may not be feasible. “We hope this project will be completed within the life span of construction. Nigerians are putting us under immense pressure. The contract is for three years and we are doing it within one year and two months. Our target is December 2018, but at most in January 2019, Nigerians will start to enjoy the dividends of democracy.” Rotimi Amaechi had said.
One then wonders how some individuals in both the ministry and BPP will be more ‘powerful’ than the president and put their selfish interests above the interest and development of the nation on projects that by now ought to have been at completion level. Fully armed with facts, we drew the attention of the public, Federal Ministry of Transport and the Presidency on the dilly- dallying between BPP and the ministry on very flimsy excuses as to why these projects are being delayed just to mislead the public and the president. Most mind boggling is that they have also taken their acts to frustrate projects at the doorstep of the President in Jibiya, Kastina State. We are in the know that President Muhammadu Buhari is 100% interested in seeing that projects undertaken by this administration are completed and inaugurated as promised before the end of this year but that can only happen when the hawks at BPP and Transport Ministry are dealt with.
We are waiting for their next tissue of lies to cover up their antics. We are also fully equipped with both technical and financial details and data of these two projects should they continue to dish out lies and if these wicked interests continue with their vicious network against these projects, we have no option than to publish documents and bring the matter to court of public opinion so as to unravel this mystery.
Kadiri Usman, Abuja