Nigeria’s Millennium Development Goals (MDG) office spent N154.2 million to construct a single borehole in Abuja, in what appears a shocking example of contract inflation that has helped undermine the country’s ability to achieve its MDG goals, Premium Times reports.
Drilling a single borehole in Abuja averages N1.5 million. A hydrology firm told Premium Times that amount should cover drilling and casing, installation of a solar-powered submersible pump, steel tower for the tanks, tanks, pipes, joints & suckers, installation and labour.
The firm allowed an expanded estimate of N10 million if a water treatment facility is included alongside other optional accessories.
The Abuja borehole, constructed at Gwarinpa, an expansive estate in the federal capital, had no such fittings. Indeed, the borehole had long become dysfunctional and was no longer dispensing water to the residents when Premium Times visited in June 2015.
Still, the Abuja MDG office told this newspaper it was more concerned with service delivery to the people, than the amount it takes to do so.
The eight target goals of the MDGs, set at the Millennium Summit of the United Nations in 2000, are eradication of extreme poverty and hunger; achieving universal primary education; promotion of gender equality; reduction of child mortality; improvement of maternal health; combating HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other diseases; ensuring environmental sustainability and developing a global partnership for development.
In 2010/2011 alone, N249.26billion was channelled through Nigeria’s federal ministries, departments and agencies, “Quick Wins” (Constituency projects, but now called Special projects), Conditional Grants Scheme (CGS) to state governments, and Special presidential interventions for MDGs programmes and projects.
Analysts say poor execution of projects, racketeering, inflation of contracts, and other contractual breaches are some of the factors responsible for Nigeria’s inability to achieve its MDG goals.
The Gwanrinpa borehole, constructed at N154, 242,200, according to the contract and budget papers obtained by Premium Times, is located at Galadima ‘I’ community of the estate.
The contract was awarded to Zarm Global Service on March 28, 2008. The company has no address, contact person or telephone number.
Another N110.6 million was paid for the construction of a borehole at Tungan Nasara community of Jiwa Ward in Abuja Municipal Area Council. The contract was awarded to Global And Global Venture Limited on March 29, 2008. Also, the company has no address or contact person.
When our reporter visited one of the project sites supposedly executed by the MDG office at a primary school in Dutse Alhaji community and another in Kubwa area of Abuja, there were no signs of any projects in the areas.