By Simon Ebegbulem
BENINâ€”THE Benin National Congress, BNC, a socio-cultural organization in Edo State, has appealed to Acting President Goodluck Jonathan to compel the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, to award contracts to indigenous contractors in oil producing communities in the state in order to avoid unnecessary crisis in the area.
In a letter signed by its Director of Publicity and Intelligence, Dr David Ekomwenrenren, the groupÂ regretted the current tension in Oben, Orhiomwon local government area of the state, over a N300 million NDDC road contract which was earlier awarded to an indigenous contractor, AC Egbe Nigeria Limited, but later re-awarded to another company.
It stated:Â â€œThis was masterminded by certain centrifugal forces in the presidency and the National Assembly against the community-based construction firm, A.C. Egbe Nigeria Limited, who was duly recommended, bidded, was pre-qualified by the NDDC as the most competent contractor for the job, taking into cognizance such factors as technical capacity as well as host communities’ acceptance.
â€œThe pain of the communities is that the construction company that was awarded the contract did not bid for the job, as it was awarded the contract by the grace of Edo centrifugal forces.
â€œWe, as apostles of community development, have been following the trends of this daylight-robbery with very keen interests, as we have invited the so called contractor on four occasions to attend parleys convened by the communitiesâ€™ Enigies and Odionweres without any response.”