The World Bank in a recent release blacklisted some Chinese companies in Nigeria for fraud and corruption.
The companies include China Railway Construction (International) Nigeria Company Limited, China Railway 18th Bureau Nigeria Engineering Company Limited, CCECC Nigeria Lekki (FTA) Company Limited, CCECC Nigeria Railway Company Limited, CRCC Petroleum & Gas Company Limited, and CCECC Nigeria Company Limited.
All the companies are very active in Nigeria, with ongoing or completed contracts for the construction of railways, highways, housing estates, airport terminals, municipal engineering, water resource, and hydro-power engineering projects for federal and state governments.
The World Bank announcement on its website accused the companies and several others around the world of violating the bank’s fraud and corruption policy.
Consequently, the six companies were debarred and declared ineligible to be awarded any World Bank-financed contracts for at least a year, between June 4, 2019 and March 3, 2020.
Though it is not clear what specific infractions the companies committed, available details on the bank’s website said the companies were accused of violating the provisions of the Procurement Guidelines, 1.16(a)(ii) bordering on fraud and corruption.
The policy is spelt out in the Procurement Guidelines and the Consultant Guidelines for projects executed before July 1, 2016; or through the World Bank Procurement Regulations for Investment Project Financing Borrowers for projects after July 1, 2016.
The bank’s policy requires borrowers, including beneficiaries of its loans, to observe the highest standard of ethics during the procurement and execution of bank-financed contracts.
In pursuit of this policy, the bank sees a corrupt practice as the “offering, giving, receiving, or soliciting, directly or indirectly, of anything of value to influence improperly the actions of another party.
Similarly, the bank sees the fraudulent practice as “any act or omission, including a misrepresentation, that knowingly or recklessly misleads, or attempts to mislead, a party to obtain financial or other benefits, or to avoid an obligation.”