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POLITICS & GOVERNMENT

Federal Government Begins Nationwide Audit of Abandoned Projects

Acting Executive Chairman of the Federal Character Commission Shetimma Abba

The Federal Government says it has commenced auditing of on-going and abandoned projects nationwide as part of effort to verify level of completion and project spread.

Acting Executive Chairman, Federal Character Commission (FCC), Dr. Shettima Abba disclosed this at a one-day stakeholders’ seminar organised by the commission in Port Harcourt on Thursday.

He also said that the commission was collaborating with government agencies responsible for providing socio-economic amenities and infrastructural facilities to fast-track the process.

“We are working with Ministries of Works, Power and Housing, Transport, Education, Health, National Planning Commission, the Bureau of Statistics, the Budget Office and other ad-hoc intervention programmes of government.

“These Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) are now working closely with us to imbibe the spirit of Federal Character as they embark on capital projects across the country.

Mr. Abba charged the MDAs to ensure fairness and equitable distribution of socio-economic amenities and infrastructural facilities among federating units in the country.

He said the FCC had been watching closely on states and regions that might have been short-changed with the view of remedying such situations in subsequent budgets.

“We know that needs (projects) differ from every region and states, and as such, we are resolute to ensure that projects sited by government agencies are of direct benefit to the people

“This will make our economy more prosperous and globally competitive translating to improve living condition for the citizenry,” he said.

Mr. Abba urged government bodies to focus on projects that would have direct and immediate impact on citizenes rather than focus on “white elephant projects” that could not reduce hardship.

The commission’s boss urged companies, corporate organisations and institutions to increase their corporate social responsibilities with communities to improve the lives of the people.

Nyesom Wike, Governor of Rivers, who declared the seminar open, said the state was among the disadvantaged states in terms of bureaucratic appointments within the federal structure.

The governor who was represented by his deputy, Dr. Ipalibo Banigo, said that no indigene of the state had been represented in the commission since 2016.

He told the commission to take its mandate seriously by ensuring fair and equitable distribution of bureaucratic post, socio-economic amenities and infrastructural facilities to all states.

“We are calling on government as a matter of urgency to appoint a representative of Rivers state. Further delay will compound our being marginalized.

“Nigeria must strive to close the gap of agitations by groups by being fair and just which is the hallmark of what the commission was set to achieve,” he said.

The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, said the federal government was aware of the vacancies in membership of the commission.

He said that government was currently making efforts to fill such vacancies to ensure fairness, equity and justice among the citizenry.

Mustapha was represented at the occasion by Mr Yinka Aguda, Director, General Services, in the office of the SGF.

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