Promoting Good Governance.

Arms Procurement: Buhari Orders Further Probe

Buhari arms deal probe
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President Muhammadu Buhari has given approval to the Committee on Audit of Defence Equipment Procurement, CADEP, which is currently investigating procurement of arms in the military between 2007 and 2015, to carry out further investigation of those involved in the procurement during the period in review.

The committee made this known late Thursday evening in its Third Interim Report presented to the President.

According to the report signed by Jon Ode, a retired Air Vice Marshal and head of the committee, the total amount spent for procurement and operations within the period were N185,843,052,564.30 and $685,349,692.49.

The committee said it reviewed some of the contracts awarded by the ministry of Defence, MOD, and found out that most of the contracts were given out without “significant input” from the end users – the Nigerian Army.

Names of persons that played key roles in the procurement of arms between the period in review include that of 18 serving and retired military personnel, 12 serving and retired public officials and 24 chief executive officers of companies.

The military personnel include former Chiefs of Army Staff, OA Ihejirika and KTJ Minimah, JAH Ewanisha, U Buzugbe, ER Chioba, AAI Muraina, EJ Atewe – former commander operation PULO SHIELD, DD Kitchener, DM Onoyiveta, AJS Onibasa, M Mamman, N Ashinze, AA Abubagaji, AM Inuwa, MS Dasuki – former National Security Adviser, El-Hussaini Boyi, M Oyaduogba and Abubakar Usman.

The serving and retired public officials include Nurudeen Mohammed, Bukar Goni Aji, former Head of Service, Haruna Sanusi, E.O. Oyemomi, Abdulrazak Salau, Jonah Otunla, former Accountant General of the Federation, Josephine Opara, Abdullahi Maikano, John Bamidele, Buba Gamawa, Tajudeen Fetuga and Salisu Shuaibu.

Company CEOs to be probed are Olu Bamgbose, Amit Sade, Noam Sade, Jimmy Ntuen, O Ayandele, Hima Aboubakar, Gujja Attom, Maisudan Bello-Mohammed, Lawal Oriyomi, Chinedu Onyekwere, Eleojo Peters, Alon Samuel and Edward Churchill.

Others are Rohit Nandal, JM Claassens, Kingsley Onyeabor, Donald Peterson, Kaja Onyemachi, Ponnle Abiodun, Kime Ngozi and four others whose names were not given.

The committee cited various examples where contracts were awarded to companies that lacked the technical abilities to carry out the procurement or, in other cases, contracts were awarded without any verifiable bidding process.

In some other extreme cases, contracts were awarded, monies released but the projects have not been completed even till date.

“As an example, 3 contracts with a total value of N5,940,000,000.00 were awarded to DYI Global Services Ltd and Doiyatec Comms Nig. Ltd (owned by the same individuals) for the procurement of military hardware including 20 units of KM-38 Twin Hull Boats and 6 Units of 4X4 Ambulances fitted with radios. The committee found that the 2 companies collected N5,103,500,000.00, representing 86% of the total value of the 3 contracts worth N5,940,000,000.00, but only performed to the tune of N2,992,183,705.31,” the report read.

It added: “In another instance, 2 contracts were awarded to Baram International Nigeria Limited, amounting to N420,726,799.20 for the procurement of 53 Armoured Vehicle Spare parts at the cost of N169,916,849.77 and that of Ballistic Vests, Night Vision Binoculars and 3 Unmanned Aerial Vehicles at the cost of N250,809,949.50. Sadly, the contract worth N169,916,849.77 with 90 days completion time is yet to be completed 5 years after.”

The committee said in its interactions with field operators, it was “revealed that although the platforms and ammunitions procured for the Nigerian Army were deployed for the NE operations, most of them were over aged or expired and support spare parts were insufficient or completely not available.

“The platforms were prone to breakdown without immediate recovery support. The non-adherence to the procurement procedures resulted in procurement of some unreliable equipment that reduced the capacity of the Nigerian Army in the NE operations and resulted in avoidable loss of lives and equipment.”

The committee stated that it observed several breaches of laws and regulations on payments of With-holding Tax, WHT, and Value Added Tax, VAT.

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