N1bn School Projects Scandal: Nasarawa Assembly Directs Governor Sule To Sack SSG

The Nasarawa State House of Assembly has directed Governor Abdullahi Sule to relieve the Secretary to the Government of the State, Alhaji Aliyu Ahmed Tijani of his appointment over N284.5m unaccounted school projects fund when he was Commissioner of Education in the State.

Rt. Hon Ibrahim Balarabe Abdullahi, the Speaker of the House gave the directive on Tuesday (June 2, 2020) in Lafia after the House deliberation on a report of an ad-hoc committee investigating the alleged N1 billion released in 2018 for the renovation/fencing of Secondary schools in the State.

Rt Hon. Ibrahim Balarabe, Speaker of the Nasarawa State House of Assembly read the resolution directing Governor Sule to sack the SSG

This followed a motion moved by Hon Mohammed Alkali (APC Lafia North which was seconded by Hon Ibrahim Muluku APC Nasarawa Eggon East).

The Speaker also asked Ahmed Tijani to refund over N248.5 million as unaccounted funds to the coffers of the state government.

He said that the former Commissioner displayed blatant inefficiency, incompetence and ineffectiveness in the performance of his official duties.

“Based on the resolution of the House, His Excellency, Gov. Abdullahi Sule should relieve the SSG, Alhaji Aliyu Ahmed Tijani of his appointment.

“I will request the clerk to communicate the House’s resolution to His Excellency, Gov Abdullahi Sule for his immediate action,” the Speaker said.

The Speaker called on Governor Sule to as a matter of urgency, work on the House’s resolution in the interest of peace and development.

Governor Abdullahi Sule has been directed to sack the Secretary to the Nasarawa State Government (SSG)

According to the Speaker, based on the committee’s recommendations, the total sum of N873, 233,942.60 was expended based on information from the payment Vouchers excluding 5% deductions for Monitoring and Evaluation (M $ E) as payments for the completed and uncompleted projects.

“The total released contract sum was N1, 084,000,000 Naira only, if deducted N873, 233,942.60 from the total contract sum this will amount to N210, 766, 057.40.

“Then add 5% Monitoring and Evaluation which is N37, 718, 499.19. The total sum of unaccounted funds will amount to N248, 484,556.60, ” he said.

Ibrahim Balarabe also urged the government to declare state of emergency on all the project sites to ensure its completion.

“All contractors who completed their work should be paid immediately by the ministry and all payments made to the unknown contractors should be refunded to government coffers immediately.

Nasarawa State SSG, Alhaji Aliyu Tijani Ahmed

“Funds should be released to contractors who have the capacity and ability to carry out the work,” he said.

He also called on contractors who collected money and refused to carry out the renovation/fencing to do so within one month or face the consequences.

The Speaker urged the ministry of education to take on the spot assessment of all uncompleted projects to see the level of work done and to make funds available for the completion of same in the interest of development.

Earlier, Hon Mohammed Alkali (APC-Lafia North) moved a motion for the relieve of Ahmed Tijani from his position as SSG.

Hon Ibrahim Muluku (APC-Nassarawa Eggon East) seconded the motion.

The House unanimously adopted the committee’s reports and urged the Governor to relieve the SSG of his position.

However, during the voice vote, Hon Mohammed Okpoku (APC- Udege/Loko) said ‘nil’ indicating that he was not in support of the House’s resolution ordering the Governor to relieve the SSG of his appointment.

It would be recalled that on March 17, 2020, the Speaker constituted an ad-hoc committee to carry out thorough investigation on the alleged utilisation of the N1billion approved for the renovation/fencing of public secondary schools in the State.

In a related development, the House also confirmed Dr Dominic Adagadzu Bako as the Director General, Nasarawa State Bureau for Public Procurement.

The Speaker directed the clerk of the House to communicate the House’s resolution to the governor for his necessary action on Bako’s confirmation.

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