2 federal lawmakers in Rivers accused of N400m fraud on constituency projects
A concerned Ogoni group under the aegis of Indigenous Youth Leaders Council has allegedly linked two federal lawmakers, Mr Barry Mpigi and Mr Maurice Pronem, to over N400m un-executed constituency projects in parts of Rivers South-East senatorial District.
Mr Barry Mpigi of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), representing Eleme/Oyigbo/Tai Federal Constituency and Mr Maurice Pronem of Khana/Gokana Federal Constituency also of PDP, were alleged of taking delivery of the sum as project specifications aligned with their constituencies.
The group has therefore, urged the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to expedite action geared at enthroning accountability in government.
In a petition with reference number; 2019/1401/KGEOT-RSESD/EFCC001/FCPS issued by the group on Jan. 14, and addressed to Mr Ibrahim Magu, Acting Executive Chairman of EFCC, the group demanded that the matter be given adequate attention to serve as a warning against impunity in society.
The petition was signed by Mr Augustine Nkerelo, an Activist and Community Leader in the area alongside twenty three other members.
It appealed to the EFCC to ensure thorough investigation and quick recovery of the said funds to help execute laudable projects that meet the yearnings of the people of the area.
The petition says: “Projects, estimated to cost more than N400m were funded by the Federal Government for the Rivers South-East Senatorial District, specifically for certain villages or locations in Khana/Gokana Federal Constituency, and Eleme/Oyigbo/Tai Federal Constituency.
“We the undersigned, as individuals strongly protest the lack of transparency concerning these federal constituency projects.
“As concerned citizens and voters; we seek action by the EFCC, as individuals, and as a matter of individual right, and separately; for the common good.
“We tender this petition to trigger the enforcement of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (Establishment) Act of 2002 (or as may have been amended) as part of Laws of the Federation of Nigeria.”
On behalf of the group, Nkerelo requested the EFCC to ensure wider investigation to fish out other lawmakers who might be connected to the N400 million unexecuted constituency project or other projects in that regard.
As part of investigations, Nkerelo said that though one of the projects was expectedly channeled towards capacity development for Teachers in Eleme, Oyigbo and Tai Local Government Areas not even a seminar had yet been conducted to assist improve the teachers.
He also alleged that Mpigi when confronted on the matter by the group had particularly boasted on how fast their agitation for accountability would be swept under the carpet as soon as he is re-elected and his party the PDP takes over power at the centre.