MAJORITY Leader, Benue State House of Assembly, Benjamin Adanyi, has disclosed that the 22 members who collected money to purchase prado jeeps have started refunding it to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC. It would be recalled that prominent members of the Assembly were recently invited and grilled by the EFCC in Abuja over alleged misappropriation of funds meant for the purchase of vehicles for members. Adanyi, who disclosed this during a chat with journalists in Makurdi, at the weekend, said what led to their invitation by the EFCC was not an issue of corruption but procedure, stressing that the amount meant for the purchase of the vehicles for 30 members was N375 million and not N750 million as published in the media. “The issue that involved the EFCC was procedural, somebody had petitioned the supplier about certain transactions that were being conducted, it was
when investigations were going on that the EFCC discovered that certain monies were given to 22 members. The contract was awarded to a corporate entity and not the leadership of the House. There was no correlation between the N750 million bandied in the media and the record at the ministry of finance,” Adanyi stated. According to him, the decision by members to collect the money and buy vehicles of their choice was because they felt the contract could not be executed since the contract sum per vehicle was N12.5 million against the market value of N14.5 million. “Members did not want an upward review as that would take a longer time, more so considering the prevailing economic crisis, they chose to opt for smaller vehicles,” Adanyi said. The majority leader, however, said the refund option by EFCC would favour them as the state government would have no option than to source for additional N7 million each to purchase the vehicles for them.

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