By Christiana Ekpa
Aggrieved Contractors who petitioned House of Representatives on the cancellation of contracts executed at Project Development Institute, Enugu contracts on Tuesday, threatened to drag the suspended Chairman of PRODA Governing Council Board, Comrade Daniel Onjeh before Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) over alleged extortion of over N200 million.
The Contractors who spoke through their Counsel, Barrister Omeoga Chukwu who alleged that the Board Chairman directed them to pay the amount into the two accounts of Noel Omale Onjeh’s Zenith and Guarantee Trust Bank accounts, demanded for the refund of the N200 million within 48-hours.
According to the documents compiled for submission to the anti-graft agencies, from the total sum of N27 million paid between 29th June, 2018 and 27th December 2019, the sum of N5 million was paid by ‘Writes Energy Limited; N3 million was paid by Mola Logistics Limited; N7 million was paid by Gold Crown Ultimate Premium Limited; N3.5 million was paid by Abdulkarim; N500,000 was paid by Agaba Agaba; N3.5 million was paid by Onyeke James while the sum of N4.5 million was paid by Osmond Tochukwu O. into the account of Noel Omale Ondeh with Account No: 0142310899 Guaranty Trust Bank and Zenith Bank Plc with account No: 2000130318.
Barrister Chukwu who expressed displeasure over the resolution of the House of Representatives, alleged that the House failed to reprimand the suspended Chairman of PRODA Governing Council who still parade himself as substantive chairman on AIT live television programme held on Monday.
“We have gone to the DSS, we have gone to the supervising ministry as the first step to call him to order. Now that he has failed, we have already packaged the petition, so the next step we are to take after this press conference, is to submit it to the EFCC and ICPC so that Mr. Onjeh will be investigated. We stand by our words, we stand by our records.”
He maintained that all the contracts were awarded and followed due process, stressing that: “BPP went through the process, he awarded those contracts legally.”
Barrister Chukwu who disagreed with the House resolution maintained that: “First of all we know the extent of the powers of the House of Representatives and indeed the National Assembly; they are like the representatives of the people, okay. When somebody has done bad and we have the evidence and the man has not denied it at least there should be a word of reprimand, but not a tacit acquaintance to his act. You know that the House of Reps can only recommend, they are not a Court, we are aware of that.
“So we expected them to go beyond just saying our hands are tied, the representatives of the people? You cannot reprimand injustice; you cannot reprimand impunity, obvious extortion? We are not satisfied; I don’t think we will leave it in the realm of the National Assembly. We would go beyond that to the law enforcement agencies to investigate and bring the suspended chairman to order, he’s suspended,” he said.