Vice President Namadi Sambo has denied any involvement or influencing the construction of his official residence, decrying the plot to rope him in what was purely the decision of the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA).
The VP’s official quarters is raising some dust with the Senate Committee on the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) last Thursday opposing the release of additional N9 billion. The Executive Secretary of the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA), Adamu Ismail, had told the lawmakers that the project was awarded in 2009 for N7billion.
He said that the additional N9 billion was needed to provide furniture, fencing, two additional protocol guest houses, a banquet hall and other security gadgets. Ismail had said the new proposal was not included in the original scope of work being handled by Julius Berger Nigeria Limited. But in a statement by the Senior Special Assistant (Media and Publicity) to the Vice President, Umar Sani, yesterday, Sambo decried the unnecessary controversies his official residence has generated, saying it was high time he puts the record straight. The statement reads: “Our attention has been drawn to unnecessary controversies the building of the permanent residence of the Vice-President is generating in the media.
Having taken stock of issues raised over time, we find it necessary to clarify and lay them to rest. “Aguda House, the current temporary residence of the Vice President, was designated in the Abuja Master Plan as a Presidential Guest House and the Federal Capital Territory Administration which is saddled with the responsibility of providing accommodation to deserving government officials, decided to ensure that it implements its Master Plan by locating the permanent residence of the Vice President to its present position and building a befitting accommodation to any Vice President.
“It should be known that the concept and choice of a residential accommodation was purely by the professionals in the FCT administration and neither has he ever interfered with the budgetary requirements or cost associated with the construction. It should interest members of the public to note that in the FCT 2012 Appropriation, not a single kobo was included in the budget for the residence.
“It should therefore, be carefully understood and appreciated that the Vice President has nothing to do with the construction of the new residence in question, as it is not his personal property but the residence of any Nigerian Vice President. He should therefore, not be connected with the expenditure of the construction”.