The House of Representatives has resolved to audit all abandoned infrastructural projects embarked upon by the Federal Government from 1999.
The projects, which the House said were over 20,000 and worth billions of naira, had been abandoned by the contractors even after the government had paid them over 50 per cent of the costs.
The House decision followed the adoption of a motion moved by Mr Francis Uduyok at plenary on Wednesday, entitled, ‘Need to Investigate Federal Government’s Abandoned Projects from 1999 to Date.’
Adopting the motion, the lawmakers unanimously resolved to set up an ad hoc committee to “investigate abandoned projects from 1999 till date, the cost of award, period of award, the state of completion and constraints and report back within three months for further legislative action.”
Moving the motion, Uduyok said, “The House notes the alarming number of projects which were awarded to contractors by the Federal Government’s agencies, parastatals, ministries, commissions and boards from 1999 that have been abandoned.
“A large number of those projects, estimated to be over 20,000, have received advanced payments of not less than 50 per cent and other payments, which in total amount to billions of naira. Some of those abandoned projects include important establishments such as dams, hospitals, buildings, bridges, steel companies; and access roads like the East-West Road awarded in 2006 and yet to be completed after more than a decade.”
The lawmaker pointed out that the abandoned projects had become pipes that drain the Federal Government’s funds “due to the inflationary rate that obtains when the government decides to revive the projects many years after they were awarded.”
He added, “Even though this trend has been in vogue, there is the need to change it, if the nation is to have a meaningful development in terms of infrastructure and social services. Some of those abandoned projects are currently being occupied by hoodlums and miscreants who use them as abodes to plan their nefarious activities.
“The House believes in the vision of the current administration to move the nation forward, there is the need to factor into future budgets, funds to ensure the completion of those projects.”
Meanwhile, the House of Representatives has called on the Federal Government to rehabilitate and equip the national orthopaedic hospitals in Igbobi, Lagos State and Daura, Katsina State.
The call followed the adoption of a motion moved by Mr Ademorin Kuye at the plenary on Wednesday.
Moving the motion, Kuye noted that the orthopaedic hospital in lgbobi was the foremost orthopaedic specialist institution in Africa and the pioneering hospital in the field of orthopaedics, plastic surgery and arthroplasty sports medicine in the West African sub-region.
The lawmaker recalled that the hospital started as a rehabilitation camp for wounded soldiers during the Second World War in 1945.
He said, “If this foremost orthopaedic hospital is equipped with up-to-date medical equipment, it will regain its lost glory and be able to attract qualified surgeons who had left for other better equipped hospitals, thereby helping to reduce the number of amputees who turn to street beggars.”
Adopting the motion, the lawmakers resolved to urge the Federal Government to “embark on massive recruitment of specialist surgeons to enable the hospital to meet the demands of its patients.”
They also urged the Federal Ministry of Health to “increase the number of defibrillators- light weight, battery operated portable device that checks and restore heart rhythm and shock in the hospital.”