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AfDB suspends Nigerian-based Chinese firm for fraud

AfDB suspends Nigerian-based Chinese firm for fraudThe African Development Bank Group says it has debarred a civil engineering company registered in Nigeria, China Zhonghao Nigeria Limited, for 18 months for fraudulent practices.

It said in a statement that an investigation conducted by the bank’s Office of Integrity and Anti-Corruption established that the company, as a member of a joint venture with Oceanic Construction and Engineering Nigeria Ltd, was jointly responsible for its joint venture partner’s fraudulent misrepresentations of its year of incorporation, the value of its reference contracts, and the experience of its key personnel, while bidding for two tenders under the bank-financed Urban Water Supply and Sanitation Improvement Project in Nigeria.

Part of the statement read, “The debarment renders China Zhonghao Nigeria Limited and its affiliates ineligible to participate in bank-financed projects during the debarment period.

“The debarment qualifies for cross-debarment by other multilateral development banks under the Agreement for Mutual Enforcement of Debarment Decisions, including the Asian Development Bank, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the Inter-American Development Bank and the World Bank Group.”

At the expiry of the debarment period, it added that China Zhonghao Nigeria Limited would only be eligible to participate in bank-financed projects on condition that it implemented an integrity compliance programme consistent with the bank’s guidelines.

It recalled that in June 2019, the bank debarred Oceanic Construction and Engineering Nigeria Ltd for a period of 48 months, for related fraudulent practices.

The statement said, “The Urban Water Supply and Sanitation Improvement Project is financed under the African Development Fund, an entity of the African Development Bank Group and aimed at enhancing access to safe water supply services in the Nigerian states of Oyo and Taraba through, among other components, extension and rehabilitation works on the water transmission and distribution network.”

The Office of Integrity and Anti-Corruption of the African Development Bank Group is responsible for preventing, deterring and investigating allegations of corruption, fraud and other sanctionable practices in Bank’s Group-financed operations.

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