Committee Confirms N2.3bn Spending On Cemetery Materials In Bauchi

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Senator Bala Mohammed, Bauchi State Governor

By, MOHAMMED KAWU, Bauchi

The controversy surrounding the N2.3 billion spent on mahogany and shrouds for Bauchi central cemetry by the immediate past APC administration in the state has the figure now been confirmed by Funds and Assets Recovery Committee constituted by the present PDP administration.

The Special Adviser to the immediate past governor of Basuchi, Ali M. Ali had ddebunked media report at the inception of the present PDP administration in ther state that contract for the supply of Mahogany and Shroud was awarded at a cost of N1.3 billion and not N2.3 billion as carried in the media.

A spokesman of the committee, Umar Barau Ningi who made the confirmation at a press conference in Bauchi, said contract for the supply of the materials was awarded by the immediate past administration to an array of companies, including one Engineering & Design Company between 2016 and January 2019.

According to the contract, Umar Ningi explained, the materials were to be supplied to Bauchi central cemetery, Azare, Misau, Ningi, Jama’are, Dass, Toro, Gamawa, Darazo, and Alkaleri cemeteries, and other ‘various locations’ not properly defined.

Ningi revealed that the pieces of mahogany woods to be supplied is 573, 000 at a cost of N1, 568, 033, 810, while the total number of shroud to be supplied is 66, 000 bundles at a cost of N820, 423, 360, thus putting the total contract sum at N2, 388, 457, 170,

He said, “This outregious contract implied that at the worst case scenario, at least 573, 000 people would have died within this period for the mahogany to be exhausted, while the total number of 198, 000 people must have died within the period for 66, 000 bundles of shroud to be exhausted”.

A relevant Ministry in the state handling the two related matters has in the meantime approached Governor Bala Mohammed for approval to supply  more of such materials at over N1.5 million, Ningi said however that investigations would be concluded when the committee confirm death figures from various locations to access true position of whether or not the materials could truly be said to have been exhausted.

Investigations by the media however confirm that the death figure presently at the Bauchi central cemetery ever since the commencement of its use right from the past Yuguda administration that provided the cemetery is not up to 60, 000 deaths, according to officials overseeing  the cemetery.

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