The World Bank report reveals that 18 Nigerians and firms have been sanctioned by the World Bank, a Bretton Woods institution, for engaging in corrupt practices, fraud and collusive practices in its 2021 fiscal year 2021.
The indictments were made under the cross-debarment policy of the World Bank Sanctions Board, World Bank Chief Suspension and Debarment Officer and the African Development Bank.
Mr. Elie Abou Ghazaleh and Mr. Fadi Abou Ghazaleh, alongside their firm, Abou Ghazaleh Contracting Nigeria Limited, were debarred for six months for collusive practices.
Swansea Tools Resources, a Nigerian firm, was debarred for fraudulent practices for two years and 10 months. Under its Sanctions Case No 651, The World Bank disclosed that the firm misrepresented its past experience in its bid for a road maintenance contract.
The report read in part, “The SDO determined that the respondent, a Nigerian firm, engaged in a fraudulent practice by misrepresenting its past experience in its bid for a road maintenance contract under a state employment and expenditure project in Nigeria. The SDO imposed on the respondent a debarment with conditional release for a minimum period of two years and 10 months. As a mitigating factor, the SDO considered the respondent’s limited cooperation with investigators, noting that the respondent produced documents and agreed to be interviewed but did not accept responsibility for the misconduct.”
Juckon Construction and Allied Services Nigeria Limited, another Nigerian firm, was debarred for corrupt practices for three years. Referred to under Sanctions Case No 649, it was disclosed that the firm made improper payment to a public official.
“The SDO determined that the respondent, a Nigerian firm, engaged in a corrupt practice by making an improper payment to a public official in connection with the award and/or execution of two waste management and refuse collection contracts under a state employment and expenditure project in Nigeria. The SDO imposed on the respondent a debarment with conditional release for a minimum period of four years.”
Ms. Okafor Glory, a Nigerian, was debarred for fraudulent practices for four years, while the firm involved, Unique Concept Enterprises, was debarred for five years for same reason.
Other Nigerian firms and and individuals on the debarment list, include Asbeco Nigeria Limited, A.G. Vision Construction Nigeria Limited, Mr. Salihu Tijani (a consultant for the National Social Safety Nets Project), Sangtech International Services Limited, Sangar & Associates (Nigeria) Limited, Mashad Integrated And Investment Co Limited, and Medniza Global Merchants Limited, ALG Global Concept Nigeria Limited, Abuharaira Labaran Gero, Qualitrends Global Solutions Nigeria Limited, and Maxicare Company Nigeria Limited.
David Malpass of the World Bank Group indicated that the bank had granted over $157bn to assist developing countries, emphasizing the need for integrity and transparency standards in public finance.
“Entrenched corruption also comes with greater economic costs for countries, as it distorts public expenditures and leads to inefficient allocations of financing away from productive investments toward rent-seeking activities. And corruption increases the costs of doing business and deters foreign investors from entering new markets.