The Ministry of Works and Housing has explained why initial payments were made to CARTIL Construction Company for the reconstruction of Ife-Ifewara Road, Osun.
The road was later rehabilitated by Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) after it was abandoned by the contractor.
An official of the Church, Pastor Niyi Adebanjo, had in a petition to the Senate alleged that the ministry in 2016 and 2019 paid N151million to the company as part payment for the road reconstruction.
Adebanjo had submitted the petition on behalf of the General Overseer of the RCCG, Pastor Enoch Adeboye, and Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, referred the document to the Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions.
The Church in the petition, alleged that the construction firm claimed the sum of N151 million as reimbursement for the reconstruction of the road, which the church constructed.
“The rehabilitation of the road was awarded and paid for by Pastor Enoch Adeboye in the sum of N188,440,342, hence the claim by CARTIl Construction Nigeria Limited was illegal and unjust, ” he said.
But the Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola who appeared before Senate Committee of Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions said the contractor CARTIL did not claim any money between 2016 and 2019 contrarily to the claim in the petition.
He said payment were made in 2011, based on the guarantee submitted and the interim statement generated by the company.
” The ministry of works also did not make any payments to CARTIL construction between 2016 and 2019 and we did not certify any work on that road done by CARTIL between the period,” he said.
Fashola said that the road was not a federal road but a 15 kilometers trunk B road in Osun.
He said the road was one of the constituency projects initiated by a then senator representing the zone in 2010.
He said the contract was awarded on Dec 21, 2010 at a cost of N662 million with an order to commence work on March7,2011 and to be complete on Nov 7,2011.
He said the ministry paid 15 per cent mobilisation fee of the contract sum of N99.414 million in line with the procurement act in 2011.
He said the ministry also made another payment of N52 million on Dec 29,2011 based on an interim statement submitted by the contractor,having mobilised to site.
Fashola said the two payments were made in 2011, contrarily to the claim that they were made in 2016 and 2019.
“This administration did not make this payment ,I did not make this payment contrarily to the allegations made by the petitioner,” he said.
He said the ministry became unsatisfied with the contractor and issued a warning letter to him in 2014 and 2015 to to terminate the contract.
“The payments made to the contractor were made in 2011 in accordance with the provisions of the Public Procurement Act on mobilisation fee not exceeding 15 per cent of the contract sum,” he said.