Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State on Friday vowed that his administration would recover every single penny of public funds found to have been embezzled by erring contractors.
Specifically, he declared that contractors who defrauded the state of N2bn in the immediate past administration, will not go scot-free.
Speaking while receiving the task force report on the renovation of selected state-owned secondary schools, Wike, who was represented by the Chief of Staff, Government House, Chief Emeka Woke, said he would not relent until funds looted from the state treasury are returned.
“In as much as I am continuing with the important ongoing projects I inherited where Rivers State tax payers’ money have been misappropriated, I will not relent in ensuring that such funds are recovered”, Wike said.
The governor also expressed gratitude to members of the task force for their hard work in compiling the report and thanked God that they did not record any ugly incident during their assignment.
Earlier, the Chairman, Taskforce on Inspection of Government Secondary Schools, Eze Otoma Eric, informed the governor that their inspection took them to selected secondary schools across the 23 local government areas of the state.
Eric lamented that the entire project was mismanaged by the immediate past Rotimi Amaechi administration.
According to him, contracts were awarded in 24 out of 42 secondary schools and the contractors were given 30 per cent value of the contract as mobilisation fees.
The task force chairman noted that the contracts were awarded with disregard to the due process panel by a special three-man committee made up of former Deputy Governor, Mr. Tele Ikuru, former SSG, Mr. George Feyii and former chairman of Senior Secondary Schools’ Board, Chief Allwell Onyeoso.
Eric further said the awards flouted the Rivers State Procurement Law of 2008 as there were no newspaper advertisements calling on interested contractors to bid.