UNIMAID Isn’t Building A Perimeter Fence For N64 billion

During the week, Nigerians on social media were outraged by reports that the Federal Government has begun the construction of a N64 billion perimeter fence at the University of Maiduguri, Borno State, Northeast Nigeria.

In 2017, the then Governor of Borno State, Mr.Kashim Shettima, approved funds for digging of trenches behind the university, while the staff appealed to the Federal Government to approve funds for the construction of a perimeter fence around the institution to stop infiltrators and suicide bomber attacks on the community.

The university was attacked by a Boko Haram insurgent on January 16, 2017,during which a mosque on campus was hit by a suicide bomber and killed four persons, including Prof. Aliyu Mani, a veterinary doctor.

During the week, the Federal Executive Council approved N65.9 billion for road projects across the country and a 23.7km perimeter fence around the University of Maiduguri.

The Minister of State for Works and Housing, Abubakar Aliyu, had told State House correspondents on Wednesday after the meeting at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, that the ministry presented two memos to the council which were approved.

“The first memo sough council’s approval for the award of contract for construction of Jalingo-Kona-Lau-Karim-Lamido Road Phase II which is about 29km.

“The contract at the cost of N6.92 billion inclusive of VAT, is the Phase II of the project; the Phase I was completed earlier.

“The second memo which was also approved by the council has three projects; one is the dualisation of the outstanding portion of the Odukpani-Itu-Ikot-Ekpene Road in Cross River State to Akwa Ibom State in the sum of N50.3 billion with a completion period of 36 months.

“This memo is a combination of three projects and they were all approved; the total sum of the three is N58.94 billion.

Aliyu said the third project on the second memo was the rehabilitation of the outstanding section of a road, including two bridges in Oyo State, awarded in the sum of N6.87s billion with a completion period of 18 months.

On his part, the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, said the ministry presented two memos to FEC and that the first “was for the procurement of textbooks for early childhood care and development and for primary schools class one, two and three throughout the country’’.

He said 15 contractors won the contracts for N6. 45 billion with a completion period of six weeks.’’

Adamu said the second memo was for the construction of 23.7km perimeter fence around the University of Maiduguri.

“If you recall, it was first approved around in 2019 but for reasons of some delay the work is going to commence only now; the project sum is N1. 4 billion with a completion period of 24 weeks.

“The second one is connected to the first because it is for the procurement and installation of security equipment around the fence.

“The sum of the contract is N1.088 billion and the completion period is 24 weeks,’’ he said.

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Murtala Abdullahi

Abdullahi Murtala is a researcher and reporter. His expertise is in conflict reporting, climate and environmental justice, and charting the security trends in Nigeria and the Lake Chad region. He founded the Goro Initiative and contributes to dialogues, publications and think-tanks that report on climate change and human security. He tweets via @murtalaibin

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