Information available to 247ureports.com indicate that the activities of political goons and thugs of the dark period of Anambra State appears to have unearthened one of its many resultant and embarrassing effects. This is as the federal government of Nigeria under the leadershipof President Goodluck Ebelemi Jonathan, amidst the climate of Boko Haram induced insecurity, charged the government of Anambra State with an immediate order to complete its abandoned Abuja Liaison office – or have it demolished.
This charge was handed by the Jonathan adminstration following security concerns by security experts who fear that the uncompleted liaison office building will serve as a staging grounds for terrorism groups to attack other liaison offices located in the area – particularly the national christian center located across the street and the Kano liaison office building located on the other side of the street.
The Anambra State Government during the Mbadinuju administration [1999 – 2003] had entered into a “Lease, Build, Manage, Operate and Transfer” agreement with a company, Harlesden Engineering Limited, owned by Senator Ikechukwu Obiora, to source own funds and complete the Anambra Liaison Office Building in Abuja. At the time of the agreement, the liaison office had already been 80 percent completed by Mr. Nwandu, an Enugu based contractor.
See the 8-page contract agreement below.
According tothe loosely drafted contract agreement, it was estimated that N365, 000,000 would be required to complete and equip the edifice. The agreement whichwas signed on 16th May 2003 stipulated that Senator Ikechukwu Obiorah’s firm would own and do whatever it wished with the imposing four storey building for 15 years – after the 3years required to complete the construction. Obiorah’s firm would pay the government the paltry annual rent of N500, 000 for 15years equivalent to N7.5million in rent for 15years. A source from Anambra State stated that “the abandoned edifice can easily fetch a minimum rent of N100 million a year “. But the agreement stipulated that the rent would not be varied or scaled upwards for any reason.
Cursory investigations conducted by associates of 247ureports.com revealed that Senator Ikechukwu Obiorah was posing as a ‘front’ for the then governor of Anambra State, Gov Mbadinuju. The contract agreement was drafted in a manner to give unfettered ownership of the Anambra Liaison office to Obiorah’s firm for 15years – in return for a rentage of N500,000 per year to Anambra State [-which is equivalent the rentage for a boys quater in Central Business Area, Abuja]. The agreement also stipulated that after completion of the Anambra liaison office, the government Anambra will not have access to the examine the facility unless it writes a letter with a three  months notice – to allow for access to be arranged. The agreement allows for the duo of Senator Obiorah and Gov Mbadinuju to operate the facilty as they desired – either as a hotel, an office building, etc.
Adding gravitas to the fermenting stench, the Firm belonging to Senator Obiorah, through the 8years it was awarded the contract, did nothing on the building – thus allowing the building to become habitation grounds for settlers to camp within the uncomplete building – prompting the Fed Government to give an ultimatum to the government of Anambra State to immediately complete the building or have it pulled down. However sources untangled the reasons for Senator Obiorah’s abandonment of the project. They stated that since Gov Mbadinuju failed in his bid to return to office in 2003, Senator Obiorah abandoned Mbadinuju and the project.
Meanwhile the Anambra State government is not taking the federal government threat easy. The Anambra State Government, in respponse, sought legal advise from the office of the Attorney General [AGF] of the Federation concerning the agreement and the way forward. As gathered, the AGF, having examined the agreement, advised the Anambra State government to re-award a contract to complete the building.
In September 2011, as advised, Anambra State governmet awarded the contract to another reputable firm – PAUL B Plc – for the sum of N500,000,000 without mobilisation. The new company has promised to complete the job in 36 weeks.
As PAUL B Plc mobilised to site to begin work on Monday, Senator Obiorah appeared on site with men of the Nigerian Police Force [NPF] to threaten arrest of workers from Paul B PLC. The work site turned near dangerous for the workers. The Police officers under instructions from Senator Obiorah ordered for work to be stopped. And work on the abandoned project was stopped again.