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HomeEntertainment NewsReducing, rerouting Lagos-Calabar Highway midway, a procurement abracadabra - NEFGAD

Reducing, rerouting Lagos-Calabar Highway midway, a procurement abracadabra – NEFGAD

The Network for the Actualisation of Social Growth and Viable Development (NEFGAD), a public procurement advocacy group, has frowned at how properties of struggling Nigerians and thriving businesses were demolished in the ongoing construction of the Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway.

Recall that the 700-kilometre coastal highway had been enmeshed in controversy following the demolition of Landmark Beach Resort, valued at $200 million, to create right of way for the project, which is estimated to cost the Federal Government N15 trillion.

However, NEFGAD said the destruction was driven by the project’s lack of proper procurement diligence and Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA).

The group, therefore, called on the President to either cancel the project or initiate a comprehensive probe into the procurement process.

In a statement released on Tuesday by its Country Head, Mr Akingunola Omoniyi, NEFGAD criticized the Works Minister, Engr Dave Umahi, describing the procurement and implementation processes as “mere procurement abracadabra” that deviate from existing procurement regulations and common sense.

Akingunola expressed concern over the secrecy surrounding the procurement process, culminating in the award of the contract to Hitech Construction Company, a conglomerate owned by Mr. Gilbert Chagoury.

Given the magnitude and sophistication of the project, NEFGAD called for a rigorous procurement process to ensure sustainability and cost-effectiveness.

The absence of these elements, Mr Akingunola argued, rendered the project unfit for its intended purpose.

NEFGAD condemned Umahi’s recent announcement to reduce the project size from ten lanes to six lanes after construction had already commenced.

Mr Akingunola labelled this decision as another severe procurement anomaly that warrants sanctions.

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