The House of Representatives on Thursday resolved to investigate allegations of infractions in the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) award of contract for the dredging of Warri Seaport and Escravos Channel.
This followed a unanimous adoption of a motion during plenary by Rep. Nicholas Ossai (Delta-PDP).
Ossai while moving the motion, noted that the water transport and maritime trade were strategic and of great importance to the Nigerian economy.
He said that the Federal Executive Council (FEC) had earlier approved N10 billion for the dredging of Warri Seaport and Escravos Channel.
The lawmaker said that when the projects were successfully implemented as planned, they would revive and re-energise economic activities in the Niger Delta Region and the entire South-South Geopolitical zone.
He, however, alleged that the NPA took advantage of the FEC approval to award a contract worth N10 billion for the dredging of the Warri Seaport and Escravos Channel without any prior budgetary provision or appropriation.
The legislator alleged that the contract was awarded to a company whose reputation and professional competence was smeared internationally.
He said that the company had suffered several criminal indictments and convictions in many countries.
The lawmaker expressed worry over attempts by some faceless persons to blackmail individuals and organisations raising alarm over the alleged illegality in the award of the contract.
In his ruling, the Speaker of the House, Yakubu Dogara, mandated the Committees on Ports, Harbours and Waterways and Public Procurement to investigate and report back within four weeks for further legislative action.