The third interim report of the presidential committee on audit of Defence from 2007 to 2015 was released on Thursday night by President Muhammadu Buhari, showing once again humongous, heartless rape of our country by Senior military officers, defence contractors and civil servants who collaborated with the pen robbers.
According to a statement by the President of the Presidential Committee on the Audit of Defence Equipment Procurement in the Armed Forces, AVM Jon Ode found that the two 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.
In another instance, two contracts were awarded to Baram International Nigeria Limited, amounting to N420,726,799.20 for the procurement of 53 Armoured Vehicles 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.
Similarly, between 29 April 2005 and 19 October 2010, the MOD awarded 2 contracts to Progress Limited for the supply of 42 units of BTR-3U Armoured Personnel Carriers and spare parts for the Nigerian Army. However, neither the MOD nor the NA could provide the contract agreements to ascertain the cost of the APCs.
Although 26 of the APCs were delivered in 2007 and immediately deployed for Peace Keeping Operations in Sudan, the APCs scandalously broke down on induction. The Committee observed that the APCs did not meet the operational requirement for the Army, caused Nigeria international embarrassment and deprived her appropriate reimbursement from the United Nations.
With respect to contracts awarded directly by the Nigerian Army, the Committee found that many of the contracts were characterized by lack of due process, in breach of extant procurement regulations and tainted by corrupt practices. In this regard, a review of the procurement carried out by Chok Ventures Ltd and Integrated Equipment Services Ltd established that between March 2011 and December 2013, the 2 companies exclusively procured various types of Toyota and Mitsubishi vehicles worth over N3,000,000,000.00 for the Nigerian Army without any competitive bidding. Though the Committee found no credible evidence of delivery of the vehicles, the vendors were fully paid based on job completion certificate authenticated by the then Chief of Logistics.
Also, analyses of the various banks accounts of the two companies showed transfers to individuals related to the then Chief of Army Staff.
The Committee also noted that between 3 September 2014 and 30 April 2015, NIMASA funded accounts of the Joint Task Force Operation Pulo Shield with various sums totalling N8,542,586,798.58 purportedly to enhance operations of the Joint Task Force in the Niger Delta. Analyses of the accounts of the Joint Task Force showed that transfers totalling N6,277,698,885.13 were made from the account. The then JTF Commander could not justify these transfers but confirmed that the sums were changed into dollars and handed over to a private citizen. Additionally, he could not account for the balance of N2,264,887,914.45.
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