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Army Contracts: Buhari Gives Approval to Probe Ihejirika, Minimah, Former Minister, Others

by on July 15, 2016
 

Following the submission of the third interim report of the Presidential Committee on the Audit of Defence Equipment Procurement from 2007 to 2015 to President Muhammadu Buhari, has approved further investigation of 18 serving and retired military personnel, 12 serving and retired public officials and 24 chief executive officers of companies involved in the procurement.

A statement released by the committee through the Ministry of Information and Culture said the report was released yesterday.

The statement by the committee’s president, Air Vice Marshal Jon Ode (rtd), said all were either accounting officers or played key roles in the Nigerian Army’s procurement activities during the period under review.

 Those listed for further investigation include two former Chiefs of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. O.A. Ihejirika (rtd) and Lt.-Gen. K.T.J. Minimah (rtd); former Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Dr Nurudeen Mohammed; and three former Permanent Secretaries in the Ministry of Defence – Mr. Bukar Goni Aji, Mr. Haruna Sanusi and Mr. E.O. Oyemomi.

Also, the CEOs to be investigated include Col. Olu Bamgbose (rtd) of Bamverde Ltd; Mr. Amity Sade of Doiyatec Comms Ltd and DYI Global Services; and Mr. Edward Churchill of Westgate Global Trust Ltd.
According to the committee, the total amount spent for procurement and operations within the period was N185,843,052,564.30 and $685,349,692.49.

The report stated that the Nigerian Army contracts awarded by the Ministry of Defence for the period under review were often awarded without “significant input from the end-user (Nigerian Army) and to vendors who lacked the necessary technical competence”.

Giving an example, the committee alleged that three contracts with a total value of N5,940,000,000 were awarded to DYI Global Services Ltd and Doiyatec Comms Nig. Ltd (owned by the same individual) for the procurement of military hardware including 20 units of KM-38 twin hull boats and six units of 4X4 ambulances fitted with radios.

The committee found that both companies collected N5,103,500,000, representing 86 per cent of the total value of the three contracts, but only performed to the tune of N2,992,183,705.31.

The committee also found that a contract worth N169,916,849.77 for the procurement of 53 armoured vehicles’ spare parts, with 90 days completion time, was yet to be completed five years after.

With respect to contracts awarded directly by the Nigerian Army, the committee found that many of the contracts were characterised by “lack of due process, in breach of extant procurement regulations and tainted by corrupt practices.

“In this regard, a review of the procurement carried out by Chok Ventures Ltd and Integrated Equipment Services Ltd established that between March 2011 and December 2013, the two companies exclusively procured various types of Toyota and Mitsubishi vehicles worth over N3,000,000,000 for the Nigerian Army without any competitive bidding.

“Though the committee found no credible evidence of delivery of the vehicles, the vendors were fully paid based on job completion certificate authenticated by the then Chief of Logistics.

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“Also, analysis of the various bank accounts of the two companies showed transfers to individuals related to then Chief of Army Staff”.

Similarly, the committee discovered that between 29 April, 2005 and 19 October, 2010, the defence ministry awarded two contracts to Progress Limited for the supply of 42 units of BTR-3U armoured personnel carriers and spare parts for the Nigerian Army. However, neither the ministry nor the army could provide the contract agreements to ascertain the cost of the APCs.

“Although 26 of the APCs were delivered in 2007 and immediately deployed for Peace Keeping Operations in Sudan, the APCs scandalously broke down on induction,” it said.

The committee observed that the APCs did not meet the operational requirement for the army, thereby causing Nigeria international embarrassment and deprived her appropriate reimbursement from the United Nations.

Also, between 19 September, 2013 and 11 September, 2014, the army awarded contracts to DICON amounting to N4,329,985,000 for the procurement of Igirigi and Spartan APCs; with arms and ammunition.

It said the contract for the procurement of 40 units of NSVT heavy machine guns with accessories and 10 units of Igirigi APCs were sub-contracted to Kennedy Logistics Ltd and Streit Group FZE at the cost of $1,597,500 and $1,850,000, respectively.

The contracts were awarded to DICON at the cost of $2,237,000 and $3,450,000 resulting in price differentials of $781,000 (33%) and $1,600,000 (46.4%), respectively.

“Furthermore, the post-delivery Technical Inspection Reports revealed that the APCs were unsuitable for the North-east operation. However, sequel to the deployment of the APCs in the North-east, one was destroyed by RPG fire, killing a colonel inside.

“As at 13 May 2016, only one of the 10 Igirigi APCs deployed to the North-east was serviceable,” the report of the committee revealed.

It was also found out that following a request by the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) on 13 May, 2013, the government released N1,340,000,000 for OPERATION BOYONA, aimed at dislodging terrorist camps along the borders with Cameroun, Chad and Niger.

“In August 2013, ONSA requested and got approval for additional N2,000,000,000. However, DHQ and the services confirmed non-receipt of any additional funds for Operation BOYONA.

“In March 2014, the ONSA made a case for the release of N1,000,000,000 to sustain offensive operations against Boko Haram insurgents.

“Although the amount was approved and released, the committee could not establish the utilisation of the funds. Similarly, in January 2015, the then Honourable Minister of State, Foreign Affairs (HMSFA II) requested for N7,000,000,000 to urgently fund the operation of the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) in the Lake Chad Basin which was approved and released to ONSA.

“However, the committee could not ascertain the utilisation of the funds from ONSA, DHQ and the services. The returns made by ONSA to the committee showed that about N1,500,000,000 was withdrawn in cash while several disbursements were made to some companies that appeared not to have any relationship with the MNJTF or any operations against Boko Haram,” the report of the committee stated.

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The committee, in its report, also observed that contracts awarded to SEI and its two associated companies, APC Axial Ltd and HK-Sawki Nig Ltd, fell short of established norms.

“Between May 2014 and March 2015, the ONSA mandated CBN to release various sums totalling $386,954,000 to SEI and the two associated companies for ‘procurement of technical equipment’, without tying the money to particular items of procurement.

“Thus, the allotment of the funds was left at the discretion of the vendor without input or consultation with ONSA or the Nigerian Army. One of the new equipment SEI procured for the Nigerian Army from Ukraine was BTR-4E APC.

“However, according to the designers of the equipment, ‘some of the products sold to Nigeria were actually among 42 units designed for Iraq which subsequently rejected them due to poor performance rating’.”

The committee also noted that between September 3, 2014 and April 30, 2015, NIMASA funded accounts of the Joint Task Force Operation Pulo Shield with various sums totalling N8,542,586,798.58 purportedly to enhance operations of the Joint Task Force in the Niger Delta.

“Analyses of the accounts of the Joint Task Force showed that transfers totalling N6,277,698,885.13 were made from the account. The then JTF commander could not justify these transfers but confirmed that the sums were changed into dollars and handed over to a private citizen.

“Additionally, he could not account for the balance of N2,264,887,914.45.”
The committee observed breaches of laws and regulations on payments of withholding tax (WHT) and value added tax (VAT) also. It said the unremitted WHT from 2007 to 2015 amounted to about N862,962,065.99, $2,093,710.06 and €2,700, respectively.
However, through the intervention of the committee, some companies remitted N109,843,495.40 to FIRS.

The committee further recommended that the FIRS should liaise with the Nigerian Army to recover all outstanding payments of WHT.

The committee’s interactions with the field operators also revealed that although the platforms and ammunition procured for the Nigerian Army were deployed for the North-east operations, most of them were over aged or expired and support spares were insufficient or completely not available.

“The platforms were prone to frequent breakdown without immediate recovery support. The non-adherence to the procurement procedures resulted in procurement of some unreliable equipment that reduced the capacity of the Nigerian Army in the North-east operations and resulted in avoidable loss of lives and equipment,” it stated.

The committee said on the basis of its findings, the president approved its recommendations that the relevant law enforcement agencies should carry out further investigations in respect of the individuals and companies that were accounting officers or played key roles in the Nigerian Army procurement activities during the period reviewed by the committee.

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SERVING AND RETIRED MILITARY PERSONNEL
01
Lt Gen OA Ihejirika (Rtd)
former COAS
02
Lt Gen KTJ Minimah (Rtd)
former COAS
03
Maj Gen JAH Ewansiha (Rtd)
former CTOP(A)
04
Maj Gen U Buzugbe (Rtd)
former COPP(A)
05
Maj Gen ER Chioba (Rtd)
former DG DICON
06
Maj Gen AI Muraina (Rtd)
former CAB(A)
07
Maj Gen EJ Atewe
former Commander JTF Op PULO SHIELD
08
Maj Gen DD Kitchener (Rtd)
former COLOG
09
Brig Gen DM Onoyiveta
former COS to COAS
10
Brig Gen AJS Onibasa
former OMT
11
Brig Gen M Mamman
HQ NAE
12
Col N Ashinze
former SA – NSA
13
Col AA Abubagaji
former AD Fin
14
Col AM Inuwa
former AD Fin (COPP)
15
Lt Col MS Dasuki (Rtd)
former NSA
16
Lt Col El-Hussaini Boyi (Rtd)
former AD Fin
17
Sqn Ldr M Oyaduogba
Finance Offr JTF Op PULO SHIELD
18
96NA/43/8364 Cpl Abubakar Usman
SERVING AND RETIRED PUBLIC OFFICIALS
SERVING AND RETIRED PUBLIC OFFICIALS
01
Dr Nurudeen Mohammed
former HMSFA II
02
Mr Bukar Goni Aji
former Perm Sec (MOD)
03
Mr Haruna Sanusi
former Perm Sec (MOD)
04
Mr EO Oyemomi
former Perm Sec (MOD)
05
Mr Abdulrazak Salau
former DJSD MOD
06
Mr Jonah Ogunniyi Otunla
former DFA MOD
07
Mrs Josephine N Opara
former DFA MOD
08
Mr Abdullahi Maikano
former DFA MOD
09
Mr John Bamidele
former DFA MOD
10
Mr Buba M Gamawa
former DJSD MOD
11
Mr Tajudeen Gbenga Fetuga
former DFA MOD
12
Alhaji Salisu Shuaibu
former Dir Finance ONSA
CEOs OF COMPANIES
CEOs OF COMPANIES
01
Col Olu Bamgbose (Rtd)
CEO Bamverde Ltd
02
Mr Amit Sade
CEO Doiyatec Comms Ltd & DYI Global Services Ltd
03
Mr Noam Sade
GM Doiyatec Comms & DYI Global Service Ltd
04
Mr Jimmy Ntuen
CEO Barnes & Tubbies Ltd
05
Dr O Ayandele
CEO TS-Y Ltd
06
Mr Hima Aboubakar
CEO SEI
07
Alhaji Gujja Attom
CEO Baram International Nig Ltd
08
Alhaji Maisudan Bello Mohammed
CEO Dalfam Nig Ltd,
09
Mr Lawal Oriyomi
CEO 2020 Nig Ltd
10
Mr Chinedu Onyekwere
CEO Chok Ventures
11
Mr Eleojo Peters
CEO Clover Nig Ltd
12
Mr Alon Nelken Samuel
CEO Hadassa Investment Security (Nig) Ltd
13
Mr Edward Churchill
CEO Westgate Global Trust Ltd
14
Capt Rohit Nandal
CEO Hercules Manufacturing (Nig) Ltd.
15
Mr JM Claassens
CEO Conella Services Ltd
16
Mr Kingsley Onyeabor
CEO Phoenix Technology Trading Company
17
Mr Donald Peterson
CEO Richfield Technologies Ltd.
18
Kaja Alexander Onyemachi
CEO Jiangxi 299 Metal & Stones Ltd
19
Mr Ponnle Abiodun
Berwick Integrated Services Ltd
20
CEO
Rapiscan System Ltd
21
CEO
Dorema Nigeria Ltd.
22
CEO
Progress Ltd
23
CEO
Koncept Auto Centre Ltd
24
Mr Kime Egozi
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