The Minister of Niger Delta, Godsday Orubebe on Tuesday dismissed allegations by the anti-corruption network led by a former member of the House of Representatives, Dino Melaye that the ministry awards and pays for non-existent and over inflated contracts.
Reacting to the allegations, Mr Orubebe said all projects initiated by the ministry are verifiable and exist in communities traceable by anyone who is serious on getting facts.
He said all projects are mandated to go through the due process office and the ministry only deals with existing files of projects approved by the due process office and not with contractors as the allegations suggest.
“What they have said is total fallacy,” the Minister said.
In a telephone interview with Channels Television, Mr Orubebe, who travelled out of Nigeria, promised to furnish the media with the “facts and figures” of the contracts.
Mr Melaye, who is the Secretary of the anti-corruption network, had alleged spurious award of contracts in the Niger Delta by the ministry threating to file legal action against the Minister of finance and her Mr Orubebe.
Also reacting to the allegations by the former lawmaker, the chairman of the House of Representatives’ committee on the Niger Delta, Warman Ogoriba said he is not aware of any petition to his committee on projects in the region and advised Mr Melaye to desist from misleading the public with his unverified records.
Some of the allegedly phantom projects which the group said have been exhaustively investigated and found fraudulent are the contract for the channelization of the Odoubou-Bololou creek project in Ogbaba-Gbene, Brutu Local government area, costing N1.2 billion; contract for the land reclamation and shoreline protection at Ogboba-Gbene and channelization of Foupolo-Bunu ndoro creek both above N2 billion each.
Both Misters Orubebe and Ogoriba however said the former lawmaker and his group are only being mischievous and crying woof over nothing.