Barely 48 hours after the House of Representatives Committee on Finance demanded explanation on the $460 million Abuja CCTV camera project from the Ministry of Finance, the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) has accused the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, of funding the “phoney contract.”
The CCTV installation project, which was initiated by late President Umaru Yar’Adua, was awarded in August 2010 by the former President, Goodluck Jonathan’s administration to help security agencies in the Federal Capital Territory check the growing insecurity.
Since the agreement became signed, Nigeria has been servicing this loan to China while Nigerians are yet to attest to the visibility of this project within the F.C.T.
However, the Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed, while responding to the lower chamber’s committee enquiry on Thursday, acknowledged that her ministry has been servicing the loan but could not explain the status of the project.
“We are servicing the loan but on the project, we will have to ask the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Authority because the project was deployed in the FCT, I have no information on the status of the CCTV,” the minister said.
The APC, in its reaction signed by its spokesperson, Lanre Issa-Onilu, on Friday evening, alleged the contract as “fraudulent.”
He added that such a revelation should be considered as a yardstick to reject the main opposition, PDP, at all levels.
“Recent disclosures by the finance minister, Zainab Ahmed, that the current administration continues to service a $460 million loan taken from China to fund a phoney Abuja Closed-Circuit Television (CCTV) contract is a stark reminder why Nigerians must continue to reject the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) at all levels of government.
“The fraudulent CCTV contract was awarded in August 2010.
“Lest we forget the $16billion spent on power with no electricity; fuel subsidy rackets; counter-insurgency funds that were diverted and shared to political cronies; a phoney gas supply and processing agreement which has left the current administration contesting a $9.6 billion judgment debt, among other corrupt schemes and heists perpetrated by consecutive PDP administrations during its 16 years rule,” the statement read.
The statement also lauded the Buhari administration.
“The President Muhammadu Buhari administration is progressively and aggressively instilling financial discipline, prudence, curbing leakages and ensuring probity in the way government conducts its business.
‘The execution of the ongoing national infrastructure projects are a sharp departure from the past where contracts were awarded and cash-backed yet poorly executed or not executed at all. Today, Nigerians are getting full value for every kobo released for public works.
“Our public resources are now being rightly deployed to address our national infrastructure needs, social investments and other initiatives that directly benefit the people,” the official added.
The PDP’s spokesperson, Kola Ologbondiyan, did not respond to multiple phone calls, Whatsapp chats, and text messages.