Reps probe violation of due process in power sector

By Umar Muhammad Puma

The House of Representatives has resolved to investigate the alleged diversion of funds appropriated for the power sector and the apparent disregard of due process in the awards of power projects.
The House has therefore agreed to report back its findings back in six weeks for further legislative actions.
The resolution of the House was sequel to a motion sponsored by Rep Abubakar Yunasa (APC Gombe), who noted efforts by successive administrations to address the situation due to the centrality of power in the development and economic advancement of any nation.
Rep Yunasa further noted that present administration has made the provision of adequate power a cardinal programme in its scheme of projects that will herald the industrialisation of the country.
According to him, “funds were appropriated by the National Assembly in the 2016 and 2017 budgets for the power projects, some of which were awarded and are at the various stages of completion, while others are yet to be awarded.
He informed the House that the bulk of the funds appropriated in the 2016 and 2017 budgets for the power was expanded without regard to due process, as a result of that, contractors handling the projects are not paid, citing Zengeru hydro power projects as example.
He expressed concern that failure to pay contractors might lead to increase in the cost of the projects, apart from heightening the restiveness of resettled communities which could present huge risks to the execution of the projects.

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