FRAUD? Lawmaker Allegedly 'Tricks' Community With Constituency Project
Mr Angulu Dobi, is a lawmaker representing Kuje/Gwagwalada/Abaji/Kwali Federal Constituency of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja in the House of Representatives.
He has been accused of not giving his community an earth dam project worth 150 million Naira which he secured as constituency project.
An investigation by OrderPaper has revealed that the earth dam, which was supposed to be in Kwaku village, is not there and government ministries are saying they are not aware of such a project.
Residents of Kwaku village are accusing him of unilaterally altering the Appropriation Act to deny them of the dividend of democracy approved for them in the 2016 budget.
Mr Dobi now has to prove to the people of Kwaku village, a rustic settlement in Kuje Area Council, that he had their best interest to be able to get their vote in the coming election.
The community, which has over 16 electoral wards under it with a total population of over 3,000 people, is embittered that it was not only short-changed in democracy benefits but that its representative in parliament took flight since he was elected into office.
According to OrderPaper, the constituency claimed it had gotten approval for the “construction of an earth dam at Kwaku, Kuje area council, FCT’ and assigned for implementation to the Upper Niger Basin Development Authority (UNRBDA) under the Ministry of Water Resources at a sum of 150 million Naira.
“While records available indicate that the project was funded up to 80% in 2016, facts on the ground revealed that there was no project of such sited or being implemented in the sleepy and poverty-ridden community.
“This status quo was alerted for attention and subsequent media investigation when users of the some Nigerians raised concerns about the project.
“During a joint visit by OrderPaperNG and Daji360 to Kwaku village where the lawmaker supposedly cited the project, no earth dam as described in the budget was seen even though what looked like one existed,” OrderPaper wrote.
The level of poverty that is visible in Kwaku community, will leave anyone who visits in a shock over the nature of the road which only motorcycles can access.
According to Mr Idris Adamu, who was identified as the chairman of the Kwaku Fadama Development Area, a pond in the community was an initiative of the community in conjunction with Fadama to retain water to assist farmers and to boost agriculture in the community.
He said there was nothing like an earth dam in the community, a statement that the chief of Kwaku, Mr Abubakar Ishaku, who affirmed the position of Mr Adamu also corroborated.
OrderPaper said the chief was emphatic in denial that any lawmaker constructed any of the aforementioned projects.
“Actually in 2016 some contractors from the Federal Ministry of Agriculture came to seek for my permission that they wanted to construct a water harvesting structure that can serve farmers in the community and I obliged them. To the best of my knowledge it was not a zonal intervention project by any lawmaker as you have mentioned. I am also aware of the fish pond that was managed by Fadama and the community before the ministry came and built theirs.
“I would like to state here that sometime in 2015 a political aspirant by name Hon. Dobi Angulu came to me asking for my support to be elected as federal lawmaker and he promised to fix our road and provide light and water but since he won the election, I have never seen him,” the village chief said.
The organisation said the Ministry of Water Resources where the constituency project was domiciled in the 2016 approved budget, further checked for the project in their records.
An Abuja Liaison Officer of the Upper Niger Basin Development Authority, Mr Eric Ameh, said there was no record of any earth dam
“I called my office to confirm whether they knew anything about Kwaku earth dam by Honourable Angulu Dobi, but they never found any project like that,” he said.
Defending the project that now appeared like an amount that had gone down the drain, Mr Dobi claimed he had replaced the Kwaku earth dam project with a water scheme due to the difficult terrain of the community which made it impossible for the execution of the project.
“I conceived such a project in Kwaku but the team I sent there to carry out preliminary investigation came back to me and complained that it was not going to be possible to embark on the project because of the distance from the major road; from Kuaita (Abaji LGA) to the site was too far.
“They also said the timing was wrong because it was raining season and they would not be able to move their equipment to site due to the bad nature of the road.
“So, I sat down with the contractors and suggested that there’s need to change the project to a rural water scheme.
“Though, they (the implementing) agency told me that it wasn’t in their power to take such a decision so I wrote to the Managing Director (MD) of the Upper Niger Basin and Rural Development Authority on the need to change the project from an earth dam to rural solar water scheme”.
It is this decision that Kwaku people said was unconstitutional, since the project which was meant for them was taken to another community in form of a water project.
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