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FEC approves N52bn for installation of e-border technology

The Federal Executive Council (FEC)
Thursday in Abuja approved N52 billion for the provision of electronic devices
at the country’s borders.

Briefing journalists at the end of the
weekly FEC meeting presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo in the State
House, the Minister of Interior, Lt. General Abdulraman Dambazzau (rtd), said
given the porous nature of the country’s borders, it is absolutely impossible
to effectively safeguard them.

According to him, only the installation of
technological devices could guarantee effective monitoring of the borders,
which he said necessitated the approval of N52 billion for the enablement of

The minister who said the approval was the
fallout of a Memorandum of Understanding that he presented to the council,
added that when executed, the project would be effective in 86 border posts and
foster the monitoring of 1,400 illegal routes through which smuggling and other
cross-border criminal activities are usually perpetrated.

“You will recall that when we came, I made
the observation that our borders are very porous and diverse and that it is
impossible to man these borders physically.

“Therefore, there is the need for modern
technology to be able to monitor our borders. We also thought of the capacity
to respond to emergencies at the borders.

“It is on this note that I presented a memo
today for this e-Border solution. This process started in 2012 but we picked it
up to move forward when we came in. The project is to be completed within the
next two years and it will cost about N52 billion.

“There is a pilot project already which has
been very successful. It was installed to monitor two borders.

“This project is going to cover 86 border
posts in the country. We will be able to also monitor 1,400 illegal routes that
are used for smuggling and all kinds of cross-border criminal activities.

“The Nigeria Immigration Service will work
very closely with other services. When it comes to response, with the air force
and the army units deployed near the borders, with the customs in terms of
smuggling, the information will be available real-time 24/7.”

In his own briefing, the Minister of Water
Resources, Suleiman Adamu, reviewed the contract costs for two water projects
and increased the earlier approval.

“FEC approved the extension of consultancy
services on two priority ongoing projects. First is Igawa Dam Project In
Katsina State, which is 50,60 per cent completed.

“Last year, we got a total reversal cost of
the project and extension. Aligning everything together, the supervising and
consultancy services also have to be extended to correspond with the completion

“To that effect, council approved
augmentation of over N91 million for consultancy service supervision in favour
of Messrs Cosidon Consultancy Service Ltd. This now raises the consultancy fee
from N125.7 million to N217.4 million.

“The second memo is in respect of Mangu Dam
project which has attained about 70 per cent completion. We also had revised
estimated cost approval last year, which also approved an extension period for
the work.

“In the same vein, the consultancy period
has to be adjusted to correspond to the completion period, with augmentation of
N111.6 million to raise the consultancy service supervision from N104 million
to N215 million with an extension period of 24 months in favour of AIM
Consultants Ltd,” he said.
 Credit: ThisDay

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