Constituency projects: Benue legislator diverts community borehole to personal house – ICPC

The Independent Corrupt Practice and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) on Thursday said that a borehole project for a constituency in Benue was diverted to the house of the legislator representing the area.

Though the Commission did not name the legislator or the constituency, it said that the discovery was made in the course of its current nationwide tracking of constituency projects awarded from 2015 to date.

The ICPC Chairman, Prof Bolaji Owansanoye, made the  disclosure in Makurdi during the commemoration of “The African Union Anti-Corruption Day with the theme  “The Opportunity Cost of Corruption And the Value of Asset Recovery”.

Represented by the Benue ICPC Commissioner, Mr Adebayo Obaniyi, Owansanoye said that the commission had also discovered so many of such corrupt acts in the course of their tracking of constituency projects.

He further disclosed that in Benue South Senatorial District, the Commission discovered that a road project completed on paper was no where to be found.

“We are tracking all constituency projects from 2015 till date. We have seen so many things, we have seen a signpost for road construction without the road in place.

“We have also seen where a borehole that is meant for community use has being sunk in the house of a legislator in Benue, ” he said.

Owansanoye said the negative impact of corruption on Africa’s economic development was very obvious, with vulnerable and marginalized people worst hit by the act.

“It is even sad that the bulk of an estimated USD90 billion that leave Africa through illicit financial flow annually might have come from Nigeria.

“The continent as a whole, certainly receives less than that amount in development assistance from countries of Europe and America yearly.

“Since proceeds of crime end in assets stashed mostly abroad, it is germain that Nigeria adopts the strategy of asset recovery and return to the source as one of the cardinal points of her National Anti-Corruption Strategy.”

The Chairman stressed that the commission would ensure effective utilization of budgetary allocations for social welfare and human development.

“On the other hand the commission intends to use provisions of its law, especially on non-conviction based asset forfeiture to deny corrupt persons the use of whatever they have stolen from the Nigerian people and make more resources available for development.”

Earlier, the chairman of the occasion and former ICPC Commissioner, Mr Geoffrey Anumve, said the commission needed to carry out intensive education on the endemic nature of corruption.

“Corruption is endemic in Nigeria and the country is regarded as the most corrupt nation in the world.

“Corruption has eaten deep into our system, right from the roads, motor parks, markets, schools among others.

“In our universities today, there are serious corruption activities ongoing; we have the issues of sex and money for marks which are all corruption,”  he said.(NAN)