A Nigerian popular common sense Senator Mr. Ben Bruce may have been caught up in a constituency project scam. The Senator from Bayelsa state nominated the sum of N220 as constituency projects. A claim he says is for agricultural training.
Bruce in the 2018 National Budget inserted the sum of N220 million as constituency project funds.
Under the deal, the Senator, claims N85 million will be used to carry out agricultural training for women and youth farmers in Brass, Nembe and Ogbia LGA, Bayelsa East Senatorial District of Bayelsa state, a constituency he represents at the National Assembly.
In another deal, he claimed that N85 million will be expended in the purchase of agricultural implement for women and youth farmers in his constituency while N50 million will be going for agrochemical.
Bruce carried out the hatched plan with Ministry of Agriculture, this is a clear example of how Nigerian Lawmakers work out a plan with the MDAs to pad huge sums of monies in the National budget and get them diverted under the cover of constituency projects.
When asked to account for the money, Ben Bruce refused to do so.
A senior Tracka official told WEST AFRICA REPORTERS (WAR) in a telephone conversation how they had written Freedom of Information Request to Bruce to account for the monies for projects he nominated as constituency project, but the Senator refused.
This is despite all our follow up, he told added.
Constituency project funds are intervention funds giving to Lawmakers to carry out development projects in their communities targeting the rural dwellers with the poor and the vulnerable at the centre of consideration.
Nigeria practice has shown this practice is often abused as Lawmakers simply get the money and divert it with blatant impunity and rascality.
This is even happening as Bruce has constantly, presented himself as an integrity Senator.
A source close to Bruce who lives in Bayelsa, a constituency the projects are to be implemented told WAR no such trainings were carried out. WAR could not immediately reach Bruce for an explanation.