AGBOR (Ika Weekly) – The former State Secretary of the defunct National Party of Nigeria (NPN) and a Chartered Accountant, Mr. John Ehikwe said that his invitation by the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) was a spill-over of what he described as senseless political in-fighting between the former member who represented Ika Federal Constituency at the Federal House of Representatives, Hon. Dr. Cairo Ojougboh and the immediate past chairman of Ika South Local Government Council, Hon. Sunny Ogwu.
Mr. Ehikwe who described Hon Dr. Ojougboh and Hon. Ogwu as former political god father and son said he was invited to Abuja by ICPC officials to explain his role over the contract agreement the Ika South Local Government entered into with his environmental sanitation firm, Total Environmental Resources Limited for the disposal of refuse in Boji-Boji (Orogodo) metropolis.
The astute accountant who was beeming with smiles as he addressed the press said he appeared before a panel of ICPC officials on Monday September 24, 2007, armed with 20 documents, adding that after going through the documents, members of the panel tendered an apology for wasting his time but stated that he has to be invited since his name was mentioned in a petition written against the former council chairman, Hon. Sunny Ogwu.
Ehikwe who is the Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of Total Environmental Resources Ltd said that after going through the 20 annexure, the ICPC officials concluded that he had done nothing wrong and that it was the Ika South Local Government Council and the residents of Agbor metropolis that are heavily indebted to his company, Total Environmental Resources Limited by virtue of the partnership agreement they entered into.
Asked what was he or his company accused of in the allegations that took him to Abuja, Mr. Ehikwe said the petitioners were questioning the public, private-sector partnership agreement between Ika South Local Government Council and his company in which the council gave a partial loan to the company to purchase a refuse compacting truck for the refuse disposal scheme for Agbor metropolis.
He remarked that in the said partnership agreement, the loan was to be repaid from an estimated revenue of N21 million annually, where the ten percent and the Landlords, three percent with a provision that the council will mobilize a task force for the collection of revenue for the benefiting residents of the metropolis.
He said that his house in London was put on collateral to raise fund for the refuse disposal project, pointing out that because they failed to enforce the collection of the estimated revenue, only N6 million has so far been realized out of an estimated revenue of more than N30 million.
Apart from Agbor Orogodo metropolis project, Mr. Ehikwe is a consultant to
a. Abuja Environmental Protection Board
b. Enugu Waste Management Authority.
c. Karu Area Planning Development Authority, Nasarawa State.
d. Federal Capital Territory Administration Revenue
e. Public Relations Officer, Waste Management Society Of Nigeria.
Mr. Ehikwe who was a front line member Peoples Front under Babangidaâ€™s return to civil rule programme said he left the country for England when former president Ibrahim Babagida aborted the civil rule programmes in 1990.
He came back to Nigeria in 2000 on the invitation of the immediate past president Chief Olusegun Obasanjo but could not go into active politics as he settled down into establishing and running his companies, Total Environment Resources Ltd and Six Jay Consultancy Services.
With these two companies, Mr. Ehikwe has employed between 25 and 70 men in Abuja and Agbor respectively.