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Ordering contractors back to site without payment wrong, HURIWA tells FG

The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) Sunday advised the federal government to dialogue with contractors handling various projects across the country.

Reacting to the recent directive by the Minister of Works, Dave Umahi, for contractors to return to sites, it said ordering them to return to sites without paying them is not good.

The group, in a statement Sunday, also lauded the House of Representatives for suspending moves by the minister to adopt concrete for road construction, describing concrete roads as “not feasible in the light of Nigeria’s economic realities”

It would be recalled that the FCT Minister, Nyesom Wike, had also recently told contractors handling the rehabilitation of roads in Abuja and other civil engineering services that he would not condone variations to their contract sums.

But HURIWA said it was morally and legally wrong for the government to owe roads contractors for several years, and then turn around to accuse them of economic sabotage.

It urged Umahi and Wike to dialogue with the contractors so that disagreements would not sabotage President Bola Tinubu’s promise to deliver good roads

It said, “Ministers Nyesom Wike and Dave Umahi were governors of Rivers and Ebonyi States respectively from 2007-2023. They both know the prices of goods and services in 2015 and what they are now. They know how much they bought their official SUVs then and their current prices.

“Both men know how much diesel and petrol was sold for in 2015, and the current prices. They know how much sand, chippings, asphalt, and even the cost of moving goods in 2015 vis-a-vis now. Telling a man who secured a contract in 2015 that he must return to site and complete the job at 2015 price is not only unreasonable, but wicked.”