Following the proposal sent to the governor of Delta State, Ifeanyi Okowa, through the office of the Secretary to the State Government, for the establishment of a Federal Road Safety Corps training school in Delta state, a document signed by the State Commissioner of Housing, Mr. Festus Ochonogor, which was exclusively obtained by SecretReporters, shows how Okowa and his cohorts squandered over a Billion Naira on the project.
The training school exclusively meant for the training of FRSC Inspectors is expected to have facilities for effective teaching, learning and skill training and is to be run by the Federal government of Nigeria. The school is to be situated along Owa-Alera/Owa-Oyibu road in Ika North East Local Government Area of Delta State.
According to the document obtained by SecretReporters, with file number HUS/PB/214, the architectural drawings and cost estimates were done by a company called Contemporary Designs Associates. Their architectural drawings were vetted by the Ministry of Housing and were found to be in order. The governor magnanimously approved the sum of N104,063,608.83 (One hundred and four million, sixty-three thousand, six hundred- and eight-naira, eighty-three kobo) of tax-payers money as a consultation fee for their service rendered.
The document reads “His Excellency may wish to be further informed that Contemporary Design Associates has prepared and submitted architectural drawings and cost estimates for the project to the Ministry of Housing for vetting. The vetting has been concluded and found to be in order. A large parcel of land situated along Owa-Alera/Owa-Oyibu road in Ika North East Local Government Area is recommended as the site of the FRSC Training School for Inspector in Delta State. The project consists of an administrative building, an auditorium, a lecture/ICT/Library, a multi-purpose hall, residences for officers, a clinic, powerhouse, sewage treatment and waterworks, hostels, a gatehouse, guard room, quarter guard parade and sports ground, driving range and car parks. Kindly see the drawings on pages 2 to 30”.
It was further revealed that the total amount of money approved for the project was N1,385,561,658.18 (One billion, three hundred and eighty-five million, five hundred and sixty-one thousand, six hundred and fifty-eight Naira, eighteen Kobo), and will be funded directly from “contingency vote” under the office of Okowa.
The document reads; “direct the Ministries of Finance and Economic Planning to release to the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Housing, the sum of 41,489,625,267.01 (One billion, four hundred and eighty-nine million, six hundred and twenty-five thousand, two hundred and sixty-seven Naira, one Kobo) only, comprising N1,385,561,558.18 for the execution of the N104,063,608.83 for consultancy fees.”
“It is recommended that the contract for the construction be awarded through selective tendering for speedy completion and the successful bidder should be paid 25% of the construction cost amounting to N346,390,414.55 (Three hundred and forty-six million, three hundred and ninety thousand, four hundred and fourteen naira, fifty-five kobo) only, as mobilization, i.e., (0.25 x N1,385,561,658.18) upon the provision of Advance Payment Guarantee or Performance Bond from a reputable Financial Institution.
“It is also recommended that the Consultant be paid 75% of the total fees amounting to N78,047,706.62 (Seventy-eight million, forty-seven thousand, seven hundred and six Naira, sixty-two Kobo) only, Le., (0.75 x N104,063,608.83) as stages I and II of the consultancy have been completed.”
The document clarified that “The expenditure will be charged to Contingency vote domiciled in the Office of His Excellency, the Governor”.
Fact findings by SecretReporters revealed that the state government had in the past charged such votes to the budget of the SSG where it has ‘assistance to Federal Government agencies, but the FRSC was not channelled through that route.
The school was constructed by Okowa’s cronies while the consultancy for the job was also given to his long-time partner known as Contemporary Design, owned by one Mr. Kester.