After abandoning project for months, Jonathan’s cousin set to resume work on N6.4 billion Abuja road

Apo-Karshi road abuja

Several months after it was abandoned largely due to the corruption trial of the contractor, work is set to commence on the Apo-Karshi road, in the Nigerian capital Abuja, PREMIUM TIMES learnt.

The contract for the construction of the 13.25 km road was awarded in 2011 to Kakatar Engineering Limited, a company owned by Azibaola Robert, a cousin of former President Goodluck Jonathan.

The road was designed to ease the gridlock at the AYA-Nyanya-Mararaba section of the Abuja-Keffi road that links the Abuja metropolis with some densely populated satellite towns including Karshi, and neighbouring Nasarawa State.

The Federal Capital Development Authority, FCDA, announced the award of the contract on January 19, 2011 for a sum of N6.4 billion (N6,355,609,124.53).

The project was supposed to be one of the Jonathan administration’s major achievements in the Nigerian capital.

The scope of contract was to include site clearance and earthworks; construction of culverts (pipe and box) of various sizes; drainages; construction of two bridges of 3-span (45m) and 5-span (75m); rehabilitation of one bridge; as well as pavement and surfacing.

Kakatar has so far received N2.4 billion (N2,373,619,680.99), about 37 per cent of the contract sum, remaining a balance of over N3.9 billion, PREMIUM TIMES learnt.

Two months after the road contract was awarded, the company began work at the site on March 23, 2011.

Mr. Jonathan’s exit as president coupled with subsequent indictment of Mr. Roberts by an anti-corruption agency has however meant the road, initially scheduled to be completed early this year, is less than half complete.

THE INDICTMENT

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on March 17, 2016 arrested Mr. Robert and his wife, Stella, who is the executive director (Projects) of the firm.

Azibaola Robert
Azibaola Robert

Mr. Robert was in the custody of the commission for nearly two weeks and thereafter charged to court.

The businessman was accused of using his companies including Oneplus Holdings, to benefit from the $2.1 billion allegedly diverted by former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki, who is also being tried.

Mr. Dasuki paid $40 million into Oneplus accounts controlled by Mr. Robert, the EFCC told the Federal High Court where he is being tried.

In the charge sheet, the EFCC said Mr. Robert and his wife committed “an illegal act to wit: money laundering of the sum of $40million transferred to the domiciliary account of One Plus Holdings Nigeria Limited with Zenith Bank, Account No. 5070365750 from the account of ONSA with the Central Bank of Nigeria upon a mandate Ref. No. 128/S.5LX/139 purporting to be for the supply of Tactical Communication Kits for Special Services and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 8(a) of the Money Laundering( Prohibition) Act 2011 as amended in 2012 and punishable under Section 15(3) of the same Act”.

The businessman, like Mr. Dasuki, has denied any wrongdoing.

While the case continued in court, Mr. Robert’s businesses suffered and the Apo-Karshi road, which was meant to ease the transportation needs of the hundreds of thousands of people who live in Karshi and neighbouring communities, was abandoned.

ABANDONED PROJECT

When PREMIUM TIMES visited the project site, residents of the area and officials of the construction firm lamented the state of the abandoned road.

“Rather than spend 2 hours to get to city centre, the road will make me spend less than an hour, So I lose two hours every day due to the abandonment,” Stella Mba, a Karshi resident said.

Although staff of Kakatar at the site refused to speak on record, an engineer at the site directed our reporter to the company’s head office for any inquiry.

He however confirmed that work had stopped on the project for close to six months.

“We have not been working for close to six months now and no worker has been paid. We just come here, sit down and gist and go back to our homes”, said the engineer who refused to give his name.

“The company is having issue with the government. We are waiting for them to resolve the matter,” he said.

Officials at the company’s head office, which was often abandoned, also declined comment.

However, even before the project was abandoned, government officials had lamented the slow pace of work.

The Abuja Minister, Muhammad Bello, had expressed disappointment with the pace of work during a visit to the site last year.

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RENEWED HOPE

Officials have, however, confirmed to PREMIUM TIMES that negotiations are ongoing and the company would continue with the construction very soon.

The director of Satellite Towns Development Department at the FCDA, Victoria Imande, told PREMIUM TIMES that Kakatar was making arrangements to return to the project site.

Mrs. Imande, in a telephone interview, said she had met with representatives of the company who gave the assurance of returning to site later this month.

“They came to a meeting. They reported that they have made arrangements to resume work in January no matter what happens with their (court) case. They seem very confident,” she said.


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    • Apostel

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  • Julius

    It will be good to finish the construction.. source of employment and also benefit everybody. Deal with his case in court.

    • Otile

      Abdul(julius)
      Why are you missing out on the article about Katsina University that says memo on religious groups on campus is
      targeted at Muslims? Come and add your own 2-cent words to clarify the islamic guidelines. If this ungodly islamic association was going on inthe Niger Delta you would be the first to butt in. Why are you playing dead on this issue crucial to your faith?

      Don’t just respond with insults and name calling, such are for morons not intellectuals. Oya, respond responsibly.

      • Julius

        Faggot, I refused to discuss religion with an avid homosexual like you. It wont be right..You cant be a faggi and be religious..nope !

        • Otile

          Faggot bla bla bla… is not a response expected from an intellectual, say something reasonable. Oya

          • Julius

            Faggot, I refused to discuss religion with an avid homosexual like you. It wont be right..You has my response.

          • Otile

            Name calling and insults are not substitute for intellectualism. I challenge you to defend yourself with sound arguments. Oya.

          • Julius

            enius, you brought religion into a topic about road construction/contract. Now, who is an intellectual moron here ?. Oya, think !

          • Otile

            For you muslims religion is a way of life, you cannot divorce religion from your daily lives. It is appropriate to discuss religion among other things. Don’t say that you are not a muslim nor an ardent defender of your islamic president who bases his decisions on religion and tribe.

            Go straight to the point, don’t hide under name calling and insults to divert attention. Now I have given you a theme to discuss, redeem yourself. Will you?

  • Mfeke

    I am disappointed about the news I am hearing that he is alive. Very disappointed. A man who did not even care about the over 200 poor so-called IDPs bombed to death and did not bother to even visit the camp but go on Vacation is a foreign land, does not deserve to live. Period! I am praying that the news that he is alive be untrue. I have already bought 3 gallons of Palmi to celebrate.

    • princegab

      And you are sure to be alive after the palmy?

    • Otile

      Abdul(julius)

      Why are you missing out on the article about Katsina University that says memo on religious groups on campus is targeted at Muslims? Come and add your own 2-cent words to clarify the islamic guidelines. If this ungodly islamic association was going on in the Niger Delta you would be the first to butt in. Why are you playing dead on this issue crucial to your faith?

      Don’t just respond with insults and name calling, such are for morons not intellectuals. Oya

    • Otile

      Sorry, my response below is meant for the fake moron who calls himself Julius, not you.

      • Haba mallam

        Baboon from the creek everywhere on the pages of PM

        • Otile

          Stinking donkey from the Sahara desert kicking to spread Mohammedanism on the pages of PM and beyond.

    • Powerlessconscious

      If you can wish someone death and it will come to pass. Then someone else can also wish you death and it will come to past. Is that your logic? I pity for your biaftaud brain.

      • VERITAS_ the rock of ages_

        good one. lol

    • Tmk

      Continue wish someone death and eventually meet your own while he is alive. That gallons of palmi will then be use to celebrate your death.

      • VERITAS_ the rock of ages_

        lol… fact…

    • Gibson Bosah

      Radio biafra

  • Mosley

    After your arrest, you have resumed Jonathan bashing to please you masters.

    • share Idea

      Don’t mind them. I thought the person does not have any dealings with government, now they are claiming that he was paid some money for a contract.

  • Alhajivinco

    The road was abandoned long before the man’s trial began. I know this for sure. No one could go after him because he is related to Jonathan and Jonathan was in office at the time. But let’s presume for a moment that it is his arrest that has stalled progress on work at the site; does this not indicate that the company is a mushroom Organisation that did not deserve such a huge contract? If Julius Berger’s MD is charged to court, will work on the projects it is executing be halted as a result?

    • marc umeh

      Our problem will continue to fester and grow like a malignant cancer because we refuse to learn from our past. Now is the time to inact laws that will make it impossible for any individual even a President to be able to award BILLIONS of naira worth of contract wthout the consent and approval of a board made up of people from BOTH political parties. We have to be creative in our laws.
      Every naija na thiefooo. !!!!!!!!i

      • VERITAS_ the rock of ages_

        “”””Every naija na thiefooo. !!!!!!!!i””””” Gbam Gbam Gbam. ÿou Spoken’ as the only truthful Nigerian. I be naija person but i no be thief sha. well me i am more interested in stealing more time and stronger immune system than wealth etc. Nice implementable concept president not having powers to award contracts..

    • Iskacountryman

      the military occupied the premises where the equipments were kept…

    • smart G

      Have they paid his balance?

      • Oskirin

        no b excuse b dt?

      • OdeyPeter Odo

        Contractors are not paid their balances before they complete their work. The question we should ask is has he been advanced more money in relation the the percentage of work done? It is after satisfactory completion that the balance is paid.

  • sammyctu ode

    Jonathan came as president to steal loot and destroy. He empowered a few ND people leaving millions of ND people I abject poverty. I am a Christian but I strongly criticise all the so called Christians and leaders who benefited billions and looted the treasury under him as evil selfish criminals. Yet they have the guts to start vilifying PMB when they knew that all those or most of the people that looted us are mostly southern and northern Christians. May their souls NEVER REST IN peace even in hell.

    • Emeka

      Amen!

    • marc umeh

      People overlook injustice if they are the beneficiaries. I was criticising Jonathan during his regime. I saw the coming consequences of the PDP actors.
      Stealing may not be corruption but the South are now paying dearly for their silence. Let’s hope and pray that we learn.

      • Oskirin

        whc south? hope say u no put west dere? coz na una knw wetin una dey look for…keep playing ds kind of politics till Nigeria cease to b no more.

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  • Dan Blocker

    DEAR EDITOR,

    Jonathan’s kleptomania; BUHARI’s Islamist Jihad

    The 2015 presidential election was the most useless activity Nigerians ever undertook.
    Nigerians were more or less to choose their poison – between a thief and an Islamist invader.
    That was no election. I abstained from voting because there were two evils offered to the public.
    But Jonathan’s kleptomania was the lesser of two evils, compared to the bloodiness of Islamism.

    Buhari has intentionally refused to appoint a substantive Chief Justice and
    refused to give any reason till date for his nonsense conduct, as if Nigeria
    belongs to him and his primitive and murderous Fulani kinsmen, to run the
    country like personal fiefdom. Buhari, of course, cannot be expected to say
    in public that he considers the post of Chief Justice of Nigeria as the birth
    right of his northern kinsmen. That is why he’s kept quiet in his pursuit of
    evil. He appointed the most senior Justice of the Supreme Court (Onoghen)
    as Acting Chief Justice of Nigeria, because Onoghen is a southerner.

    • Dayo. A. Williams

      @Dan Blocker:

      That means Justice Onoghen is acting for somebody else, despite being the most senior justice in the Supreme Court, according to President Buhari. So, who is the somebody he’s acting for? Is he acting for his junior in the
      court whom President Buhari will later appoint as the (Muslim) substantive Chief Justice? That’s the only reason.

      Ah, that means the Islamist agenda is now in full gear. Onoghen is refused appointment as Chief Justice only because he is a Christian. There is no other reason. This may be the year Nigeria will totally implode the way
      President Buhari is going with his crass tribalism and senseless Islamism.

      I am very dis-appointed that Professor Itse Sagay – who is Buhari’s presidential adviser on anti corruption –
      has suddenly become deaf and dumb on this Onoghen matter and he does not see clear corruption of the
      administrative process by President Buhari.

      • Gibson Bosah

        Those drugs r 3xdaily nt once plz

        • Michael Sagoe

          @gibsonbosah:disqus,

          Instead of you to listen to those words of wisdom you are attacking the messenger.

          Open your eyes, my friend. Smelly Fulani militias are occupying farmlands of Christians

          in Kafanachan today, raping women in Delta state, holding large territory in Enugu state

          after flogging Olu Falae in Ondo state and vandalizing his farmland. You still don’t see the

          signs of a planned and inspired Islamist Jihad under Muhamadu Buhari? You need tablets!

          • Gibson Bosah

            Always take ur drugs at least 2hrs b4 u login

    • Gibson Bosah

      Always end with #Copied

  • Izon Redeemer

    One feels very sad at times when we read these types of watery stories from the sponsored domain of the Apes in APC and the CIA controlled media outlets of the Fulani emirate in Aso Rock————What these childish story translates to is that Ijaws are not qualified to bid for jobs in Nigeria period===But their oil wells and revenue can be siphoned by the tripod–at will-===This was a man whom the Fulanis ati Yorubas in APC sent the Buhari sniffer dogs in Efcc, DSS and the Nigeria army headed by the Dubai thief Buratai —a relation of rogues like Magu head of efcc which has outlived her usefulness to send to kirikiri prison together with his wife—And a media house has d guts to ask why the job was not completed on time?—-For reasons best known to the Fulani head of Bingo Buhari and the Apes from the South West chasing and using Ijaws as their foot stools in Nigeria? very SAD INDEED—Robert was arrested simply because he is related to Jonathan—–period——Same as David West who was sent to jail because of his Ijaw tribal marks—ati Etete the only IJaw man to be gifted an oil well by abacha more than 30 yrs–ago –Now the tripod yearns to seize the proceeds from the sale of his oil block—As if that was not enough—————them want to do same to Deizani————————————-Separation is the only way out of the Satanic rule of the Fulani economic migrants from Mali in Nigeria———————————-

    • Gibson Bosah

      Always take ur drugs at least 2hrs b4 u login

      • amazing2012

        Thank you

      • Otile

        You too, take your own drugs each time after you listen to Buhari’s lies.

    • amazing2012

      You are sick ! One of the sign of mental sickness is stories that did not come together.
      APC,CIA, FULANI, IJAW, OILRIG, EFCC, DSS, NIGERIA ARMY, DAVID WEST, DEIZANI, MALI ETC.bla bla bla !
      Only one question: has Robber (Robert) done the job ?

      • Otile

        You are very dishonest. If you put all these organization, names of people/countries in context as he wrote them he makes a lot of sense. By trying to distort his comment you appear to be the deranged person. Knock of this deceitful al-Taqiyya. Dan iska.

        • amazing2012

          Tell me the connection between CIA (Christians organization) and supporting fulanis ?
          Tell me the connection between CIA and road construction In Abuja?
          Tell me the connection between failure to exercute contract and all those you mention?
          Is Robert the only relations to Jonathan ? If he has done the road,will any body arrest him ?
          Speak the truth and it shall set you free !!!

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  • MC

    Seems like a deal was struck during the recent arrest of Ptimes staff! Seems the APC has something incriminating on them hence they threatened to bury Ptimes if they don’t continue to link Dr Get to dirty dealings. Well, the death of this newspaper is near!

  • Gary

    A wishy-washy story that sheds no light or reason for why the project was abandoned.
    Which party was in violation of the contract? Did the construction company stop work over the travails of their boss or govt. was delinquent in meeting its payments for the job to continue?
    Instead this looks like a hatchet job to link Jonathan to yet another corruption charge. Shame on you PT, if this is your reaction to recent bullying by regime agents.

    • amazing2012

      Reason why the project was Abandone ? Corruption !