The African Development Bank had early Tuesday announced the debarment of Lutoyilex Construct Limited, a construction company registered in Nigeria.
The company’s Managing Director, Bamidele Obiniyi (also known as Mr Bamidele Abayomi) was also debarred for 36 months (May 5, 2019 to May 13, 2012).
The Bank said an investigation conducted by its Office of Integrity and Anti-Corruption established that Lutoyilex engaged in fraudulent practice while bidding for a construction contract under the Agricultural Transformation Agenda Support Program Phase One in Nigeria (ATASP-1). ATASP-1 is financed under the African Development Fund administered by the African Development Ban
“While participating in a tender for the construction of social infrastructure in Niger State, the company, misrepresented its experience in conducting similar construction contracts,” the AfDB said.
“The debarment renders the company and its managing director ineligible to participate in Bank-financed projects during the debarment period.”
The debarment, the African Bank explained, qualifies for cross-debarment by other multilateral development banks under the Agreement for Mutual Recognition of Debarment Decisions, including the Asian Development Bank, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the Inter-American Development Bank and the World Bank Group.
Investigations by PREMIUM TIMES however showed that Lutoyilex is just one of 15 Nigerian firms that have recently been sanctioned by both the World Bank and the African Development Bank for sharp practices.
Mr Obiniyi is also one of the nine Nigerian nationals currently serving debarment terms for corruption-related offences.
The Nigerian companies and individuals are part of an infamous club of 912 firms and personalities across the world who remained temporarily blocked from bidding for contracts by multilateral development banks.
The African Development Bank says sanctions are usually “imposed on entities found to have participated in coercive, collusive, corrupt, fraudulent or obstructive practices under the Bank’s sanctions system or adopted under the Agreement for Mutual Enforcement of Debarment Decisions.
“Flowing from its mandate, the Bank Group has a fiduciary and legal duty to ensure that funds are used for the purposes for which they were intended,” the African Development Bank said of its sanction regime.
“Where firms or individuals divert these funds to other uses through fraud, corruption and associated harmful practices (defined as ‘Sanctionable Practices’), the Bank Group exercises this fiduciary duty by sanctioning these entities through an administrative process.”
The Office of Integrity and Anti-Corruption of the African Development Bank Group is responsible for preventing, deterring and investigating allegations of corruption, fraud and other sanctionable practices in Bank Group-financed operations.
The investigation that led to the indictment of Lutoyilex was conducted by AfDB’s Esther Mhone and Justin Maenje.
While Lutoyilex and its managing director are accused of misrepresenting their company’s experience during a procurement process, the specific offences committed by the remaining 14 companies and eight individuals remained unclear. But the wrongdoings are all fraud related.
The affected Nigerian companies and their terms of debarment are:
- CNE Environmental & Waste Services Limited — (05/02/2019 — 04/02/2024),
- Agonic Associates Niger Limited — (30/06/2016 — 29/06/2019),
- ALG Global Concept Nigeria Limited — (23/01/2019 – 22/01/2022)
- Best Scan Solutions — (24/01/2017 — 23/01/20210),
- D.A. Construction Limited — (06/05/2014 to an unknown date)
- Emmajoko Nig Enterprises (29/01/2019 — 28/01/2024)
- Idemia Nigeria Limited — (formerly Oberthur Technologies Nigeria Limited) — (29/11/2017 — 28/05/2020)
- Lutoyilex Construct Limited — (14/05/2019 — 13/05/2022)
- Marabef Global Limited — (11/01/2018 — 10/01/2022)
- Oberthur Technologies Nigeria Limited — 29/11/2017 — 28/05/2020
- Oceanic Construction and Engineering Nigeria Limited — (01/02/2019 — 31/01/2023)
- Qualitrends Global Solutions Nigeria Limited — (16/04/2019 — 15/04/2022)
- Rojoke CNE Services Ltd. — (05/02/2019 — 04/02/2024)
- SNC-Lavalin International (Nigeria) Limited — (17/04/2013 — 17/04/2023)
- Mr Abuharaira Labaran Gero — (23/01/2019 — 22/01/2022)
- Mr Bamidele Obiniyi also known as Mr Bamidele Abayomi — (14/05/2019 — 13/05/2022)
- Mr Agomuo Nicholas — (30/06/2016 — 29/06/2019)
- Mr Efe Michael Udumebraye — (13/12/2018 — 12/12/2022)
- Mr Henry Chinedu Ojoko — (29/01/2019 — 28/01/2024)
- Mr Iyke Ambrose — (24/01/2017 — 23/01/2021)
- Mr Patrick Alozie Onwuka — (11/01/2018 — 10/01/2022)
- Mr Robinson Ekenedilichukwu Ojoko — (05/02/2019 — 04/02/2024)
- Mr Benson Ojoko — (29/01/2019 — 28/01/2024)
The firms and individuals remain ineligible to participate in contracts financed or administered by the World Bank and the African Development Bank Group for the periods stipulated against their names.
The World Bank was set up as a vital source of financial and technical assistance to developing countries around the world. It has two goals which it aims to achieve by the year 2030.
They include ending extreme poverty by decreasing the percentage of people living on less than $1.90 a day to no more than three per cent and promoting shared prosperity by fostering the income growth of the bottom 40 per cent for every country.
The African Development Bank (AfDB) Group aims to reduce poverty, and spur sustainable economic development and social progress in its member countries. Nigeria’s Akinwunmi Adesina is its current President.