Niger Gov to EFCC, investigate $181m IDP loan for Minna-Bida road

by Pita Chib, Minna

The Governor of Niget State Abubakar Sani Bello,  has asked the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to investigate the alleged  $181m loan from the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) to fix Minna-Bida road.

Ex Governor Babangida Aliyu, had said he sought the loan from the Islamic Development Bank, but pointed out that the money was not paid into the state’s bank account until after he left office.

He made allegation during the flag off of campaign ahead of the forthcoming local government election in the state.

“I went to Jeddah in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to seek an interest-free loan to dualise the Minna-Bida Road. But by the time the money came in 2015, I had left office,” Aliyu said.

He alleged that the APC government had not utilised the loan for the purpose it was intended for, which had resulted in the collapse of the road and caused hardship for travellers.

However, speaking during the presentation of flags to All Progressives Congress (APC) chairmanship candidates for the forthcoming local government election, on Wednesday, Gov Bello said his predecessor should be made to produce the said money.

"They said they took $181 million from the IDB and its in the bank. We didn't see the said money.

"Since they seem to know the whereabout of the fund, I want them to come out and tell us where the money is. They should tell us which account and bank the supposed money was paid into, " he said.

Bello declared  that the EFCC should take interest in the matter by sending an investigation team to probe the allegation.

"If the money was paid into an account and it disappeared then the onus is on the EFCC to investigate the disappearance of the said fund.

" In fact, we as a government is requesting the anti graft body to come and investigate the whereabout about of the money," he noted.

Governor Bello also tackled his predecessor for the alleged scam that trailed the abandoned stadium project located in Maikunkele area of Minna, questioning the whereabout of N1.4 billion set aside for its construction.

He also queried the "dubious deal" that stilted the progress of works on the Minna 5-Star hotel project initiated by the immediate past administration and its eventual abandonment.

He equally asked his predecessor to explain the alleged disappearance of N6 billion pension fund under his watch and many other malpractices.

According to him, his administration abhors deceit, saying, "we don't lie and we don't cheat. We promised to better the lot of our people and we are doing that steadily despite the paucity of fund", while challenging his predecessor to point at his achievement despite the huge fund he got while his tenure lasted
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