As Nigerians still grasping with the allegations of financial recklessness going on in the Niger delta development commission, another round of corruption is about to uncovered in the North East Development Commission.
A non-governmental organization, Coalition of New Nigeria transparency and Anti-Corruption (CNNTAC), has raised alarm over the massive corruption allegedly being perpetrated by the management of the newly established North East Development Commission (NEDC).
Indicted in the corruption scandal is the Managing Director of the Commission, Mohammed Goni Alkali, whom the NGO has accused of alleged high handedness, disregard for due process and the rule of law in the award of contracts worth billions of naira.
A statement signed by the NGO’s Secretary, Tijani Umar, on Thursday alleged that the N100billion disbursed to the Commission less than a year ago, vanished without any significant impact on the refugees
According to them, the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management, Sadiya Umar Farouk, in a deal with Alkali which was out of the scope of operation, allegedly took N5billion recently to purchase vehicles for the military, adding they have proof of the alleged irregularities of the Commission.
The statement read in part:
“We are in possession of other documents showing the purchases of choice properties by close staff and associates of the MD in highbrow neighbourhoods of Abuja, Kaduna and Maiduguri, which can be traced to over-inflated and non-existent contracts.
“Another massive corruption scheme is on the verge of being implemented in the name of a housing scheme in Maiduguri without the board’s knowledge and approval.
“About N5billion has allegedly been spent on Covid-19 supplies without the approval of the board.
“The MD single-handedly took care of all the coronavirus supplies, there is massive contract splitting in the commission.”
The civil group, therefore, called on President Muhammadu Buhari, as well as anti-graft agencies in the country to quickly intervene by investigating the Commission, stressing that the probe should be done without delay in order not to ruin the objectives upon which the Commission was established.
The NEDC, established by President Buhari in 2017, is charged with the responsibility of coordinating funds accruing from the Federation Account and donor Agencies for purpose of rehabilitating and resettling victims of insurgency, reconstruction of homes and Infrastructural development, tackling poverty and illiteracy in the North East states of Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Taraba and Yobe.
The Boko Haram insurgency in the North East has resulted in the massive internal displacement of persons, loss of lives and destruction of properties.
President Buhari inaugurated the board of NEDC on May 8, 2019.