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Deji Elumoye in Abuja
The Federal Executive Council (FEC) rose from its weekly meeting in Abuja, yesterday, with an approval of the total sum of N15,569,016,812 for various contracts in the Works and Housing, Education and Industry, Trade and Investment ministries.
Three ministers made this known while speaking with newsmen at the end of the Council meeting, which was presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari at the State House, Abuja.
First to brief newsmen was the Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fasola, whose memoranda received the highest funding of the day – N9,686,556,583 – said the Council gave approvals for refund of funds expended by Plateau and Borno states on federal roads, which fell within the period which the federal government gave fir such interventions.
He said: “We presented two policy memoranda. The first was with regard to the policy of government to provide refund any form to state governments for previous interventions on federal government roads, subject to the July 26, 2016 cutoff, after which reforms would no longer be eligible.
“So the two states which had outstandings with respect to eligible roads were Plateau and Borno states and Council approved the refund of N6,601,769,470. 99, in favour of Plateau State, and the sum of N3,084,787,113. 34 for Borno State,” he disclosed.
He further disclosed that his ministry sought and got approval of Council to hire the services of private sector operator, who would work with the federal government to build a central clearing house for the operations of toll plaza concessionaires, at his own expense, operate it, recover and then ultimately transfer back to government.
According to him: “Two weeks ago, we also approved the full business case for the concessioning of nine federal roads, which will include the concessionaires completion of those roads and also tolling operations, ambulance services, vehicle recovery services and so on.
“Now, this process we sought and obtained approval to start is to get a private sector operator to work with us to build a central clearing house at his own expense, operate it, recover and then ultimately transfer back to government.
“What a central clearing house will do is that it would synchronise interoperability between different toll systems that will be used by different concessionaires when they commence their tolls and also provide a one-stop accounting system and a single payment recovery system where everybody is paid at the end of the operations and also provide visibility for government to see what is going on in the operations of each concessionaire”.
Also speaking, Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Niyi Adebayo, said Council approved N1,803,556,537 contract for the construction of a package sewage system for the authority’s head office within the Liberty Free Zone in Akwa Ibom State.
He said: “My ministry brought a memo on behalf of the Oil and Gas Free Zones Authority, which is a parastatal under our ministry, as part of its responsibility of regulating and attracting foreign direct investments into the country is supervising certain oil and gas free zones in the country and one of which is the Liberty Free Zone in Ikot Abasi, Akwa Ibom State.
“To this end, they sought Council’s approval for the award of contract for the construction of a package sewage system for the authorities head office within the Liberty Free Zone in Akwa Ibom State, in the sum of N1,803,556,537.95, inclusive of 7.5 per cent VAT, with the completion period of 10 months, without variation and Counsel graciously approved the award of the contract.”
On his part, the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu, disclosed that FEC approved a total sum of N4,078,903,692 for three contracts in the Osun State University, Osogbo; the Federal University, Lokoja and National Commission for Nomadic Education.
He also stated that Council approved the memorandum that sought the takeover of the David Umahi University of Medical Sciences, Ebonyi, by the federal government, as well as the change of the name of the institution to David Umahi Federal University of Health Sciences.
His words: “We presented four memos, three of them were contracts. The first is for the construction of the Senate Building in Osun State University, in Osogbo. This is at a cost of N2,134,686,307.88, with the completion period of 76 weeks and the contractor is WAZLAF Engineering Limited.
“Second one is another Senate Building. This one is at the Federal University, Lokoja and it is at the cost of N1,607,471,754.77, with the completion period of 50 weeks and the contractor for the project is Amber Bliss Nigeria Limited.
“The third one is a contract for the erection of radio antenna for the National Commission for Nomadic Education. It is 50 kilowatt AM radio and the contractor is ECALPEMOS Technologies Limited and the contract sum is N336,745,631.70. The completion period is 14 weeks.
“The last one is a memo for the takeover of David Umahi University of Medical Sciences, Ebonyi, by the federal government. What we brought in the memo is for Council to ratify the agreement that has been entered between the Ebonyi State government and the federal government and then to approve the renaming of the university from David Umahi University of Medical Sciences to David Umahi Federal University of Health Sciences and to approve a draft bill, which has been written, and then to approve the transmittal of this bill to the National Assembly for enactment into an Act”.