FG Probes Jonathan Over N8.68bn Textbooks Contract

The Federal Executive Council (FEC) has ordered the immediate investigation of a contract awarded under the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan for the distribution of books to schools across the country.
Government, in August 2013, had awarded contract worth N8.68 billion for the printing and distribution of textbooks as well as library materials for public primary schools’ classes one to six and junior secondary schools.
FEC, which commenced yesterday at about 11a.m. shortly after the swearing-in of seven Permanent Secretaries at the Council Chamber, Presidential Villa, Abuja, was presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari.
The meeting was rescheduled to continue today.
Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, who briefed State House correspondents after the meeting, said however that Council resolved to investigate dthe istribution of textbooks to schools in the country between 2009 and 2011.
Amaechi said it would be done before commencement of distribution of N6.9 billion textbooks for schools in the country.
The Minister of Transport said Council approved production and distribution of core textbooks for early education classes 1-3 and for primary 4-6 in public schools nationwide.
He said: “The Federal Government felt there is a need to support in funding education, not just the instruction, but also the individuals who occupy the institution at the cost of N6.9 billion
“Council also gave approval for Jos Central Library and the construction of the Faculty of Animal Sciences and Engineering.
“For Ministry of Transport, we had approval for two vessels called Pilot Cutters to escort vessels into the seaport. Prior to this, we were hiring. Now we have approval for NPA to buy theirs at the cost of N1.9 billion.
“Also, council approved another two vessels of 17 meters in the eastern port that will help monitor and assist vessels into the seaport at the cost of N1.2 billion.
“Council also approved the award of contract for direct procurement of installation and commissioning of Wide Area of multilateration for the Gulf of Guinea at the cost of N3.9 billion. This is to help capture those equipment flying below the radar, for us to be able to pick them because it will be dangerous if we cannot because a lot of them use helicopters.
“There was also an approval for the consultancy services to construct a new terminal building at Mallam Aminu Kano Airport. We just want to complete the payment, which is N621 million.
“Council also approved the purchase of flight calibration inspection at the cost of N111.6 million.
“One other key project that was approved is the engagement of consultants for the project management, monitoring and evaluation including media and public relations services of the UNEP report.”
Council also approved over N377.5 billion for infrastructure projects, which include roads, power, education, water, health among others.
The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, while giving details on this, said that the Abuja-Kaduna-Zaria-Kano project will cost N155.7 billion and is expected to be completed within three years. Efire-Araromi-Aiyede-Aiyela road to connect Ondo and Ogun states at a cost of N14.4 billion.
On the Enugu-Onitsha highway, the Amansia section, he said the Council approved the variations of the cost of N38.74 billion to enable the contractor progress with the work.
Fashola said that the Jos Central Library would cost N597.4 million.
He also said Council approved the completion of Police Service Commission headquarters in Abuja.
According to him, the project was approved for variation to enable its completion over the next six months.
He said the initial cost was N3.486 billion and it has been increased to N3.925 billion, which has a variation of N439.113 million.
He said Council also gave approval for the Nnamdi Azikiwe Mausoleum in Anambra State. The project was started, but not completed from previous administration.
He said: “Council approved the additional funding to complete it from N1.496 billion N1.953 billion.”
Fashola said Council also approved money for the intervention of education and healthcare. It approved the provision of independent power plant to nine universities and one teaching hospital as the first phase of the pilot programme to cover 37 universities at the cost of N38.965 billion.
In his remarks, the Minister of Water Resources, Suliaman Adamu said Council ratified augmentation of funds to complete Adada dam Igbo-Etiti LGA in Enugu State.
“The project was started in 2010. This project has been augmented and council approved that the project be completed now at N5.6 billion by the end of 2018.
“Council also approved the augmentation of phase II Galma Dam and irrigation project in Kaduna Zaria. The phase I dam has already been completed while phase II involves irrigation and some additional structures. So, there was an augmentation to raise the project N16.5 billion in favour of Gilmore Nig. Ltd.”
Also briefing, the FCT Minister, Mohammed Bello, said Council approved the completion of the Goodluck Jonathan Way in the FCT that links traffic from Keffi-Nyanya into the city.
“We got an augmentation of an additional N3.8 billion and with the funding, the road will be completed any moment from now,”

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