A civic-tech non-profit organization, BudgIT, has uncovered the sum of N8.6 billion payment for 19 abandoned projects in nine states across the country.
The survey was conducted by Tracka, a service delivery promotion platform of BudgIT.
In a press release on Wednesday, BudgIT said findings of the survey showed that the funds were allocated to 26 contractors in the 2022 budget as part of capital expenditure but none of the projects were either executed or completed.
“Some of these projects include N542m payment to Abu-Halawa International Limited between December 2020 & April 2023 under the @FMWRNigeria for the Construction of Jare Earth Dam in Katsina. Nothing has been done on the site to date.
“In addition, the payment of N630m to Babar Global Services Nigeria Ltd and Foundation Solid (NIG) LTD between July 2022 and September 2023 under the @FMWRNigeria for the Construction of the Ogbese Multi-Purpose Dam Project, Ekiti. This site has been abandoned since 2021,” the statement read in part.
BudgIT further stated that the finding is contained in their tracking report themed “Empowering Communities for Economy Growth.”
BudgIT’s Country Director, Gabriel Okeowo, in a reaction, expressed displeasure over the contractors’ failure to execute the projects while having received payment.
He called on President Bola Tinubu to devise ways to fix the loopholes and leakages that are responsible for the misappropriation of capital expenditure in budgetary allocation.
“Despite the clamour for increased allocation to capital expenditure by FG and some nationals, our tracking exercise has revealed that capital projects are the largest conduit of embezzlement and misappropriation. Lack of effective oversight on the part of the legislature’s ministries, and agencies has largely contributed to the high level of poor project execution and in some cases, outright abandonment of a project.
“Government at all levels need to take public project execution seriously, considering the huge infrastructure gaps we are grappling with as a nation. We also hope that the new administration of President Tinubu will find ways to block these loopholes and leakages; if not, our expenditure will amount to pouring water into a basket,” Okeowo added.