Abuja Technology Village: Group invokes FOI Act

Posted by News Express | 28 November 2015 | 4,745 times

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The Civil Society Network Against Corruption (CSNAC) has sent a Freedom of Information (FOI) request to Abuja Technology Village, requesting for details of the activities of the organisation.

The request, which was signed by the chairman of the coalition, Mr. Olanrewaju Suraju, is sequel to reports of alleged irregularities and fraud in the agency. CSNAC, whose primary aim is to constructively combat corruption vigorously, is seeking clarification on the administration of the agency especially as it concerns the financial records.

The Abuja Technology Village (ATV) Project was registered under the Nigeria Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA), with its stakeholders as the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA), Abuja Investment Company and the ATV Foundation as the major shareholder. The project ought to be supervised by the Office of the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory.

The request demanded by the anti-graft group include: “Certain irregularities characterised by the employment of one Mr. Derrick Osafo, a British-Ghanaian, as a lead of a unit in ATV (Abuja Technology Village), which did not follow the due process of employment as it is alleged that he neither possesses a Nigerian work permit nor Free Zone permit as applicable to the Free Zone wherein the Abuja Technology Village operates.”

CSNAC also complained: “The ATV Project has in the last three years gulped a whopping sum of $9 million of tax payers’ money without corresponding results to justify such expenditure. The project has spent N182 million on consultancy in the last one year without returns on investment.

“Furthermore, the budgetary allocation to the ATV from the Federal Capital Territory Authority (FCTA) is shrouded in secrecy as no one knows the exact amount of the allocations. However, it is alleged that the sum of N200 million was released to it in 2014, while the sum of N150 million was approved for 2015.”

The group noted that it is requesting the information based on its mandate, saying: “We look forward to receiving this information promptly, and in any event, within Seven (7) days of the receipt of this application as provided for in Section 4 of the Freedom of Information Act, 2011.”

Source: News Express

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