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EFCC Investigates Abubakar Ahmad Sirika Over Alleged N8.06 Billion Contract Fraud

February 6, 2024

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Abubakar Ahmad Sirika, the brother of the former Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, was questioned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) regarding an alleged N8.06 billion contract scam within the Federal Ministry of Aviation.

The contracts under scrutiny were purportedly awarded to Abubakar’s company, Engirios Nigeria Limited, during his brother’s tenure as Minister.

The investigation, part of a broader probe into possible fraudulent activities during the ex-minister’s term, includes allegations of conspiracy, abuse of office, diversion of public funds, contract inflation, criminal breach of trust, and money laundering.

Approximately N3,212,258,930.18 of the contract funds were traced to Engirios Nigeria Limited, a company owned by Abubakar, who holds a Level-16 position as a deputy director in the Federal Ministry of Water Resources.

Four significant contracts were reportedly awarded to Abubakar’s company, including the construction of a Fire Truck Maintenance and Refurbishment Centre in Katsina Airport, procurement and installation of equipment in Aviation House, Abuja, and acquisition of aircraft and simulator for the Nigerian College of Aviation Technology, Zaria.

Despite the substantial sums disbursed, there is no evidence of work being completed on any of the projects.

The EFCC’s investigation spans the period between August 2022 and May 2023, coinciding with the timeline of the alleged contract awards.

The agency suspects that Hadi Sirika awarded the contracts to his brother, Abubakar, despite the latter’s status as a senior civil servant, employed since 2000.

This development has raised questions about the transparency and accountability of the Ministry of Aviation during the previous administration.

Additionally, the EFCC is reportedly examining the controversy surrounding the Nigeria Air project, including conflicting reports on the amount of funds allocated and spent on the initiative.

While critics claim that N85 billion was expended on the project, Hadi Sirika insists that only N5 billion was approved, with N3 billion disbursed.

 

Credit: Imran Muhammad

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