Human and Environmental Development Agenda (HEDA), a non-governmental organisation, has petitioned the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), asking it to investigate capital projects allocated to Surulere 1 Federal Constituency of Lagos State.
Femi Gbajabiamila is the representative of Surulere 1 Federal Constituency at the House of Representatives.
In the letter to the anti-graft agency which was signed by Olanrewaju Suraju, HEDA’s chairman, the human rights group said that, like other concerned members of the society, it was disturbed by recent reports of lavish spending by Gbajabiamila, who is the majority leader of the House.
The letter reads: “According to Vanguard of May 28th and 29th 2018, Honourable Femi Gbajabiamila has been reported to have surprised his wife with a gift of Mercedes G-Wagon, selling for between N75million and 100million in Nigeria.
“The gift on the 27th May, 2018 was to commemorate the wife’s 50th birthday. He was also reported to have rocked a N1.2million Gucci suit when giving this gift to his wife. The stylish Gucci Heritage web tape crepe wool jacket that costs $3,450, approximately N1.2million.
“Though his intention could have been right, but in a country where the minimum wages is N18, 000 with hunger and unemployed youths roaming the streets, his actions were seen as insensitive to Nigerians especially from his Surulere Constituency.”
HEDA said Nigerians are wondering how it is possible, within the legitimate salaries of the parliamentarian, to lavishly expend such amount of money on luxury items by a public office holder.
The human rights group recalled that a total of N1.3billion was allocated for constituency projects in Surulere 1 Federal Constituency in the year 2017 federal budget.
“HEDA Resource Centre believes that no room must be opened for any person to abuse public trust while in public office.
“Corrupt practices and misapplication of public funds must be abolished in all fronts by relevant government agencies charge with the responsibilities of investigating allegation or suspicions of corrupt practices.
“On this account, HEDA is calling on your good office to open a wide investigation into the utilization of funds for capital projects allocated to Surulere 1 Federal Constituency under Honourable Gbajabiamila to ensure and convince discerning Nigerians that public funds were not used for private family services and benefits by people elected into offices for service,” the letter added.