By Chris Mbunwe & *Violet Abongnwen
Engineers controling Government projects have been identified as the most corrupt set of people in Cameroon.
According to the Northwest Follow-Up Committee of Public Investment Projects, BIP, most Control Engineers of Government projects, officially received poorly executed projects after collecting bribes from corrupt Contractors.
The Northwest Regional Follow-Up Committee of the PIB, said Government sponsored projects such as buildings, roads, classrooms, benches and others entrusted in the hands of these corrupt officials have very short life-span.
Confronted by this practice, the President of the Northwest Follow-Up Committee of the BIP, Hon. Cyprian Awudu Mbaya, while presiding at the first semestre Regional participatory follow-up meeting to evaluate the level of physical and financial execution of the 2015 PIB in the Region on July 16, frowned at Control Engineers who gang-up with vote holders to endorse poorly executed projects.
“It is embarrassing that after this Committee took pains to inspect road projects like the Bamenda- Mbengwi axis and rejected it, the Control Engineer went ahead to receive the poorly executed road. Look around town, the T-Junction, Hospital Round-About in Bamenda, the Ndop Town-Babungo Road and others, the question is, who received this projects? Hon. Mbaya quipped.
The members of the Committee equally identified the issue of the lowest bidder during tenders, as one of the worst forms of corruption.
According to them, the lowest bidder ends up abandoning or executing the project poorly.
“That is why we have resolved that the National Follow-Up Committee should be revisited and, possibly, not accept anything below five percent. We risk losing FCFA 500 million going back to Yaounde, because there are no lowest bidders,”Awudu remarked.
It was also resolved that defaulting contractors should be prosecuted and not awarded contracts in the future.
The Committee members expressed indignation that some contractors are awarded many contracts when they do not have enough funds, staff and equipment.
Concerning the cacophony brewing between the Ministries of Public Works and Public Contracts, Hon Awudu said the conflict, which is detrimental to the Government and the suffering population is centered on money.
The Committee Members listened to a pathetic story from the Divisional Delegation of Momo, where a contractor collected money to construct a health unit and supply a refrigerator vamoosed without completing the project.
The Regional Delegate of the Economy, Planning and Regional Development, Ivo Eseke Bende, while presenting the global summary of the projects executed in the Northwest Region said, of the 525 projects earmarked for the Region, the financial execution stands 16.30 percent, while physical execution stands at 51.25 percent respectively.
He assured the Committee members that the Region will attend 100 percent at the end of November this year.
He also called for total collaboration from stakeholders.
*(NPB Student on internship)