The House of Representatives has begun investigations into projects abandoned by the Nigerian government since 1999.

An ad hoc committee set up by the House to probe abandoned projects in the communications sector, including the closed-circuit television camera projects, held its inaugural meeting in Abuja on Wednesday.

Punch reports that Chairman of the committee, Chukwuma Umeoji,  said the parliament would prosecute firms and individuals linked to any failed projects.

Umeoji said the mandate given to the panel included investigating abandoned federal government’s projects from 1999 to date, to find out the costs and the period the contracts were awarded as well as the level of completion, among other things.

He said, ministries, departments, agencies, parastatals, commissions and boards awarded contracts for the execution of several capital projects since the nation returned to democratic rule in 1999.

“Many of these projects have been abandoned even as many of them (contractors) have received advance payments of not less than 50 percent of the contract sums. Government has spent billions of naira on such contracts without the government and the people getting value for the money spent so far.

“It is instructive to note that if the nation is to have a meaningful development in terms of infrastructure and social services, there is an  urgent need for a change in the manner of award of contracts for and the execution of capital projects.”

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