By Gabriel Enogholase & Ozioruva Aliu
Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State, yesterday, threatened to probe the N30 billion Benin stormwater project by the previous administration in the state. He described the project as a ploy to defraud Edo people.
The governor made the disclosure while inspecting the Textile Mill Road catchment of the project, in Benin City.
He said, “You can see for yourself that the so-called stormwater project was a fraud; it was a contract to defraud Edo people. From what I can see now, the stormwater project in this catchment area was never designed to take water away from the area. The area was never drained. You can see the level of what we are doing now as compared to that of the previous administration.
“It is almost a two-meter difference. There is no way you can drain water from a low land into a higher ground. We say we have experts and paid over N30 billion for this project. The person that supervised this project today calls himself a minister supervising bigger projects for the Federal Government. This is not acceptable.”
He added that the previous administration spent huge sums of money on the water storm project claiming that on completion, it would drain water from the area and restore the property of Edo people living in that area.
He assured Edo people that his administration would do everything necessary to drain the area and restore life to the people, noting, “They spent N30 billion claiming that they want to take away the suffering of Edo people, de-flood the area and restore value to the people’s property. Look at what has happened now to this project for five years?
“With what we have done now with less amount of money, we are going to finally drain this area and bring back life to the people in this catchment area. I don’t like probing but this time, we have to set up a panel to get the facts of what happened. We can’t throw away such a huge amount of money. People must be made to account for their time in service in government.
“They have to explain to us how they spent the N30 billion on a project they claim will drain water from a community. But the project drains the water to nowhere. They have the boldness to claim that we abandoned the project which was never made or designed to work in the first place.
“Clearly, we will take the necessary precaution to recover all the money due to Edo people that was stolen through this project.”