WITH the official backing of President Muhammadu Buhari, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) is set to grill suspects linked with the $16billion failed power projects.
Twenty suspects, among them, two ex- governors, three former ministers, a former chairman of a bank and an ex- aviation chief, will be invited by the anti – graft body to say all that they know about the projects. Also to be grilled are 17 companies linked to the projects.
The projects were executed during the administrations of ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo, the late President Umaru Yar’Adua, ex-President Goodluck Jonathan and the first term of President Buhari.
But those in charge of the projects said $8.58billion was actually allocated between 2005 and 2018.
The breakdown is as follows: $2.2billion from 2005- 2007; $600million in 2008; about $5.37b from 2010/2011 to date; $150m-$200m made available to NNPC by CBN; and about $80million for Ibom Plant.
The EFCC however insisted on following the cash to know if the NIPP projects were overpriced and whether or not there was either embezzlement or diversion of the cash meant for power projects.
A special team has been raised by the EFCC and all documents from relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) have been obtained.
“The EFCC has received the backing of President Muhammadu Buhari to probe the power projects by following the cash to ascertain alleged overpricing of the projects; payments for job not done and whether or not there was embezzlement of funds or diversion to private accounts, “ an EFCC source said yesterday.
“We will take about 20 key people who were involved in the execution of some of these projects. We have also shortlisted about 17 companies for investigation.
“There are two former governors from the South-South, a former chairman of a bank and a former chairman of an airline whose companies have been implicated.