As of February 2021, a total sum of N15.45 billion remains unaccounted for by the Niger Delta Development Corporation (NDDC).
The corporation had a budget for 115 projects worth N98.52 billion. Of this amount, N61.84 billion was released to the corporation for the execution of these projects.
However, prior investigations showed that at least N15.45 billion of this sum was missing.
The Civil Society Coalition on Audit in Nigeria (CSCAN) carried out an independent evaluation on 115 of the 176 contracts/projects.
Their findings outlined that top priority projects with outrageous sums were not accounted for. Sixty per cent (60%) of the projects executed were done violating the project standard and other principles.
With the aim of developing the oil-rich Niger Delta region of Nigeria, the NDDC was established by the former president, Olusegun Obasanjo in the year 2000.
In September 2008, former President Umaru Yar’Adua announced the formation of a Niger Delta Ministry, with the Niger Delta Development Commission to become a parastatal under the ministry.
One of the core mandates of the Commission is to train and educate the youths of the Niger Delta region to curb hostilities and militancy while developing key infrastructure to promote diversification and productivity.
Sixteen per cent of the projects were not implemented according to standard requirements.
These projects did not attain the level of project specifications and as such the implementation process was termed poor. A total of 19 projects fall under this category.
Fifteen percent of the projects were not available, in the sense that payments were fully made to the contractors but with physical inspection carried out, these projects were not available.
A total of 18 projects fall under this category.
Ten percent of the projects were executed with irregularities, jobs were completed but not all equipment was used in the completed job or items that weren’t working were installed. A total of 12 projects fall under this category.
Nine percent of these projects were abandoned, most projects that fell under this category were abandoned by NDDC contractors despite having full payment. A total of 11 projects fall under this category.
Three percent of these projects were executed by another agency, it was discovered that payments were made to contractors for the project but were abandoned by these contractors despite being paid, these same projects were done by another contractor. A total of 4 projects fall under this category.
Two percent of these projects were not executed, the project was awarded, the money was not accounted for on the project on the project site. Three projects fall under this category.
One percent of these projects were partially executed, the projects awarded were not fully executed according to the standard set, either by the contractors or the amount budgeted for the projects were not paid fully.
These projects cut across the nine states in the Niger Delta region namely Bayelsa, Delta, Cross River, Rivers, Akwa Ibom, Edo, Ondo, Abia and Imo states.
They cover various thematic areas which are classified into three broad categories viz education, health and provision of infrastructure.
Out of these 115 projects, three thematic areas were on education, health, and infrastructure according to CSCAN.
On Education, the sum of N1,085,325,954 billion was budgeted for contracts awarded by NDDC, N1,031,013,484 was paid, over N600 million is yet to be accounted for.
On Health, the sum of N1,042,776,000 was budgeted for contracts awarded by NDDC, N980,209,440 was paid, over N5 million is yet to be accounted for.
Infrastructure was divided into three sub-thematic areas, which includes Road projects, Water projects and others, and these others include installation of solar power electricity, etc.
The sum of N96,390,115,618 was budgeted for contracts awarded for infrastructure, N59,827,213,250 was paid so far, over N52 million is yet to be accounted for.