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CRBDA: CSO wants alleged N2.5 billion fraud investigated

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Group plans nation-wide protests against corruption

By Joseph Erunke

ABUJA-AN anti-corruption organisation under the aegies of Vanguard for Transparency and Good Governance, has appealed to the federal government to launch probe into the alleged N2.5 billion fraud uncovered in Cross River Basin Development Authority,CRBDA,about nine months ago.
The allegations which was stated in a report released by governing council of the CRBDA, had revealed irregular activities including misconduct, misappropriation and mismanagement of funds by those overseeing the agency.
A statement signed by the Director General, Vanguard for Transparency and Good Governance, Joseph Atainyang, said it was necessary for President Muhammadu Buhari to halt activities of the CRBDA and direct investigations into the allegations which has a prospect of determining the future of the ongoing anti-corruption campaign in the country.

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In his words: “As has clearly emerged today, all known and unknown means are contrived in the agency to beat Due Process, by-pass regulating Laws and side-step Checks and Balances.
‘’It is thus very sadly to this end therefore, that the humongous resources (which runs into billions of Naira) that have accrued to the agency overtime, has been entering personal pockets in the current leadership headed by Engr Bassey Nkposong and supervise by the Minister of water resources, Adamu Suleiman.
‘’We therefore call on the president to halt the activities of the Commission in its present manner, and the Presidency to assume direct supervision of the Commission and oversee effective reforms in it to make the Commission open, transparent and accountable.
‘’The Federal Government would be self assessing to set up an independent panel to investigate the weighty corruption allegations hanging on the necks of the CRBDA MD and the Minister. Until then, the anti-Buhari conspirators in the CRBDA and the Water Resources Ministry will continue to feed fat on public funds, while plunging the nation into continuous payment of foreign debts.”
It could be recalled that a government audit report had revealed that the agency mismanaged over N2.5 billion via illegal disbursments, payments to incompetent contractors, abandoning critical projects and failing to get value for cash disbursed between 2008 to 2015.
Analysis of the report from the office of the Auditor General of the Federation, shows how the agency frivolously spent public funds on poorly executed projects while leaving others to lie in ruins in flagrant abuse of the Fiscal Responsibility Act.
According to the report, the transfer of project funds to the said company, which was not named, without any contract agreement for a job to be carried out, appears to be a diversion of public funds.

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