Rights Group Petitions EFCC Over Oyo Govt. Award Of Road Contract
A human rights organisation, Human Rights Monitoring Agenda (HURMA) has called the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to Investigate the Oyo State Government, on the recently award of contract to the construction of the 110 kilometers Ibadan Circular Road Project.
HURMA said it’s petition was based on the State government’s failure to comply with laid down rules guiding awards of contracts and the way and manner the contract was awarded to a company, Sel-Vydra Limited, which was registered in May 2021.
The rights group led by its Executive Director, Comrade Buna Olaitan Isiak, also said in the petition dated November 3, 2021 and titled “Petition on the award of contract for the construction and the 110-kilometre Ibadan Circular Road to Sel-Vydra Limited; Nipping the crime in the bud before it is commited”, also expressed concerned that the way and manner in which this contract was awarded to Sel-Vydra Limited bears all the intents and imprints of the usual trajectory that have accompanied inflated, uncompleted and abandoned projects in this country with their resultant pauperization of the masses, capital flight when developmental funds are siphoned, loss of government revenue and chronic under-development.
Consequently, the group to the EFCC to ensure that there is compliance with extant laws of the land on procurement including strict adherence to spelt-out due process. And compel the Oyo State Government to begin afresh the process of awarding the contract in an open and transparent manner so that the interest of the good people of Oyo State is served.
The group’s petition reads: “This petition is written to seek your timely intervention, investigation (and possibly compel the termination) of the award of contract for the construction of the 110-kilometer Ibadan Circular Road by the Oyo State Government to one amorphous Sel-Vydra Limited without compliance to extant laws of the land on award of contracts and with blatant disregard to due process.
“As a human rights organization whose thematic areas include working for transparency, probity and accountability especially in the public sphere with regards to fiduciary matters as an avenue to engendering social justice, peace and stability, we are gravely concerned with the brazen disregard to the provisions of the Oyo State Public Procurement Law 2010, which among other provisions mandates the staging of competitive bidding process before a contract in public interest could be awarded.
“We also observed the pathetic failure of the Oyo State Government to obtain a ‘Certificate of No Objection’ from the Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP) for the project which would have in a sense signify clearance from the appropriate agency for the consummation of such project.
“The Oyo State Government failed to comply with either of these regulation and similar others, acting almost with the premeditated aim of ensuring that the award of the contract circumvents both legal and public scrutiny.
“We also observe that the company in question (Sel-Vydra Limited) to which the contract was awarded was only established on the 11th of May, 2021, which is less than a year old and as such cannot boast of any worthwhile experience to handle such project. This is akin to throwing public funds/resources, of which the Oyo State Government (under Governor Seyi Makinde) is charged to protect and deploy effectively and judiciously, down the drain of incompetence by its chronic patronage of a company ‘’hurriedly’’ put together for obviously sinister purposes. Beside this, the core objectives for which Sel-Vydra Limited was established and registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) does not include civil engineering and construction works and is therefore not eligible to bid for the contract in the first instance which explains the effrontery of the Government of Oyo State at the blatant jettisoning of transparency in the entire episode.
“Our concern as a group is hinged on the fact that the way and manner in which this contract was awarded to Sel-Vydra Limited bears all the intents and imprints of the usual trajectory that have accompanied inflated, uncompleted and abandoned projects in this country with their resultant pauperization of the masses, capital flight when developmental funds are siphoned, loss of government revenue and chronic under-development.
“It is in the light of the above facts that we seek your intervention to ensure that: •There is compliance with extant laws of the land on procurement including strict adherence to spelt-out due process
•That the Oyo State Government be compelled to begin afresh the process of awarding the contract in an open and transparent manner so that the interest of the good people of Oyo State is served.
•For the Oyo State Government to, by itself declare Sel-Vydra Limited whose interest it appears to be pushing as unqualified and undeserved of bidding for such a contract in the first place owing to its lack of requisite experienceFinally, it is our belief that governmental agencies should be pro-active and employ more of preventive strategies than corrective ones by acting promptly on information supplied by members of the public so as to effectively stem the tide of graft that is threatening the corporate existence of our country as a nation. We therefore await your patriotic and prompt action/response on this matter”.