Senate panel queries NECO over alleged N6.5bn contract scam | Dailytrust

Senate panel queries NECO over alleged N6.5bn contract scam

NECO reveals number

The Senate Public Accounts Committee has queried the National Examination Council (NECO) for allegedly awarding N6.5bn contracts without due process.

The committee, relying on the 2017 report of the Auditor-General for the Federation, alleged that NECO awarded contracts for the printing of security and non-security documents without approval from the Ministerial Tenders Board.

But NECO said it awarded the contracts through selective tendering to avoid leakage of examination papers.

The committee, chaired by Senator Matthew Urhoghide, is probing financial books of federal agencies using the audit report.

The report said examination of records and documents revealed that the NECO’s Tenders Board approved the award of contract for printing of security materials in the sum of ₦451m to a company in March 2017.

The second query said contract for the printing of security and non-security documents valued at ₦6.1bn was awarded without open competitive bidding as required by the Public Procurement Act (PPA) 2017 (as amended).

Responding, NECO Registrar Prof Godswill Obioma said the N6.1bn contracts for the printing of question papers were awarded through selective tendering.

“This is the case to avoid leakages of our examinations and awarding contract to printers of doubted integrity,” he said.

On the N461m contract, Obioma said: “These are payments to Data Science Nigeria Limited for the supply of Optical Mark Readers for objectives question papers for various examinations conducted by the council.”