Ogun lawmaker denies inflating road contract figures from ₦9bn to ₦54bn

Hon. Tolulope Akande-Sadipe speaks out on controversial road rehabilitation project.

Hon. Tolulope Akande-Sadipe, the representative of Oluyole Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives, has firmly rejected allegations of contract inflation during a public hearing in Abuja concerning the Olomi Olojuoro road project in Oyo State.

The lawmaker clarified that her actions were driven by the dire need to protect her constituents’ interests and ensure justice prevails.

The controversy emerged when DC Engineering Limited, the contractor responsible for the road project, alleged that the contract sum had been inflated from ₦9 billion to ₦54 billion through collusion between Hon. Akande-Sadipe and officials of the Federal Ministry of Works. The accusations were raised during a public hearing organised by the House of Representatives.

Addressing the media on Tuesday, September 12, 2023, Hon. Akande-Sadipe stressed that the road project, awarded in 2018 with a two-year completion period, had not seen substantial progress even after five years.

She emphasised that her constituents had submitted numerous petitions, prompting her to sponsor a motion calling for an investigation into the project’s status and the payments made to the contractor.

The motion proposed the establishment of an Ad-Hoc Committee to comprehensively investigate the contractors’ consistent failure to meet their contractual obligations. It also urged the committee to scrutinise the budget allocations for the Olomi Olojuoro road project.

The lawmaker expressed her disappointment with DC Engineering Limited, the accusing company, stating that it had failed to fulfill the terms of the contract to the detriment of Oluyole residents.

During the public hearing, she presented a document refuting the allegations against her and highlighting the company’s questionable practices, including subletting parts of the project to minor construction firms.

Furthermore, Hon. Akande-Sadipe recalled an inspection visit to the project site in 2021, which revealed that the company was allegedly collecting money from communities to fix feeder road culverts that had been removed during the rehabilitation work.

In response to allegations of promoting a specific contractor, Aereatech Nigeria Limited, she firmly denied any direct or indirect relationship with the said contractor and asserted that she had never inflated any contract. Her sole focus, she reiterated, was safeguarding the interests and well-being of her constituents in Oluyole.

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