The Director of Works in the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing and his counterpart in the Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA) in Osun State are to appear before the Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions next week, following the alleged payment of N151 million to a firm for the rehabilitation of a road constructed by the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG).
Both officials are expected to appear before the panel on March 29, 2021, in Abuja.
The Chairman of the committee, Senator Ayo Akinyelure, ordered that summons for appearance be served on the officials, after a meeting in Abuja. The development followed a petition by the RCCG to the Senate.
The church alleged that a construction firm, Cartil Construction Nigeria Limited, had demanded the payment and was paid N151 million by the Federal Government for a road it rehabilitated as a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) project.
A petition presented by the senior pastor of the church, Pastor Niyi Adebanjo, on behalf of RCCG’s General Overseer, Pastor Enoch Adeboye, alleged that the construction firm claimed the sumof N151,508,901.22 as reimbursement for the rehabilitation of the Ife-Ifewara Road in Osun State, which the church carried out.
The RCCG’s petition to the Senate read: “The rehabilitation of the road was awarded as part of the church’s CSR and paid for by Pastor Adeboye in the sum of N188,440,342.00, hence the claim by Cartil Construction Nigeria Limited was illegal and unjust.
“The church hereby requests the Senate to look into the matter and, among others, urge the firm to refund the money it collected to the coffers of the Federal Government.”
Adebanjo, who was defending the petition before the Senate panel in Abuja last week, said: “Pastor E. A. Adeboye employed the services of the Construction Department of the RCCG to execute the project between August 26, 2016 and 2019 at a total cost of over N188 million.
“The project started from Enuwa junction in Ife and terminated at Garage Olode in Ifewara, which is 8.2 kilometres.
“We have details of all the seven companies that supplied us with the materials used to execute the project. They delivered all the materials on site. We have supplied details of the project to the committee.
“While the project was ongoing, authorities of the Nigerian Correctional Service pleaded with Pastor Adeboye to extend the construction to their premises, which was done.
“There are people at Ife and Ifewara who can testify to the fact that Pastor Adeboye constructed the road because he visited the palace, where the Oba expressed appreciation to him for constructing the road.
“We were, therefore, shocked when we found out that somebody was trying to defraud the Nigerian state by claiming the money for a project he never executed.”
Also, the lawmaker representing Atakunmosa East/West at Osun State House of Assembly, Babatunde Komolafe, on Sunday corroborated Pastor Adeboye’s claim that he rehabilitated the Ife to Ifewara road.
Komolafe, who is also the Olu-Omo of Ifewara, stressed that Pastor Adeboye had been providing infrastructure to the residents of the town daily.
He said: “The road was not in good shape before Pastor Adeboye intervened and rehabilitated it. Pastor Adeboye has investment on that road. He has Mount Camel and others. I believe he did the road because of that. No construction company of the Federal Government worked on that road; it was Baba Adeboye that did the road.”
(Credit: The Nation)