You dont have javascript enabled! Please enable it! Outrage As Tinubu Govt Signs Rail Line MoU With UK Firm Jointly Owned By Former Lagos State House Speaker And With No Rail Construction Experience - 247Updates

Outrage as Tinubu govt signs rail line MoU with UK firm jointly owned by former Lagos State House Speaker and with no rail construction experience

The Ministry of Transport has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with MPH Rail Development Limited, a United Kingdom (UK) firm, to implement the Port Harcourt–Enugu–Calabar–Abuja Standard Gauge Rail Line project....CONTINUE READING

In a statement released via its X page last Friday, the ministry said the company is expected to manage the design, construction, commissioning, operation, and eventual transfer of the standard gauge rail line.

The ministry added that the MoU was signed under a public-private partnership framework, adding that the company is registered in the United Kingdom (UK).

It said the signing followed the approval of the outline business case and the issuance of a compliance certificate by the Infrastructure Concession and Regulatory Commission (ICRC).

This clearance, it said, enables the firm to focus on compiling the necessary documentation for the Federal Executive Council’s (FEC) approval to advance the project.

The MoU signing ceremony was attended by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Transportation, Olufemi Oloruntola, the Director of Rail Development, Zirra Fimbarr, and the Director of Legal Services, Pius Oteh.
Profile of the company

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The company was formed by one Andrew James, a British citizen, in 2019 and went on without any relationship with the Nigerian government or private sector until August 24, 2023, when the company appointed Osinowo Rotimi as the first director with a Nigerian background.

Subsequently, Osinowo Sayeed was also appointed as a director in January 2024.

According to The Cable, the company has filed as a dormant organisation three times since its registration in 2019.

Other discrepancies pointed out by disgruntled Nigerians include the company’s lack of a website and its lack of track record of engaging in rail construction since its incorporation in 2019.
Nigerians React

Social media users have criticized the federal government for signing an MoU with a company that was incorporated less than five years ago, on September 26, 2019.

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Others have described it as a PI&D saga in the making, adding that a project of such magnitude should not be entrusted to a young company with an unknown history.
See the reactions below.

@Deji_Dokun wrote: “In the end, This Messrs MPH Rail Development (UK) Limited, will use Abu’s funds to entertain Abu.”

@iyaboawokoya wrote: “It is still an MOU, so I am guessing it will still go through FEC, BPE and ICRC due diligence.”

@SirajMashi wrote: “This information is very vital indeed. It’s therefore all Nigerians shall put their eyes on the contractors handling projects in their communities. This will no doubt reduce corruption and project abandoning the attitude of the Nigerian Government and Contractors.”

@KenWiwa4 wrote: “THIS IS ANOTHER BIG FRAUDULENT CONTRACT. GOVT PURCHASE PROCEDURE WASN’T COMPLIED WITH. HOW CAN THE GOVT AWARD A CONTRACT OF SUCH MAGNITUDE WITHOUT FOLLOWING DUE PROCESS? WHEN WAS THE TENDER FOR THE CONTRACT RUN? WHO WERE THE OTHER BIDDERS? THIS RAILWAY IS.”

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@IamOmatseyeJnr wrote: “A company incorporated in 2019 with £100 in balance sheet as of 2022 and correspondence coming onboard in Jan 2024. How?”

@AndyHReal wrote: “This is another railway scam loading in Nigeria.@MinTransportNG. I challenge you to name one railway project successfully completed by Messrs MPH Rail Development on this earth, in heaven or anywhere in the universe. How would they deliver? Who does a railway project on a PPP basis?”

@paskael wrote: “Hope this is not P&ID again. We need proper due diligence on this UK company.”

@OladapoOlajide4 wrote: “Company that has no name, or address, has only £100 assets and is jointly owned by Nigerians. Are you kidding us?”