The World Bank has suspended SoftTech IT Solutions and Services Ltd and its Managing Director, Mr. Isah Kantigi, for allegedly bribing officials to renew consultancy deals.
tech IT Solutions and Services Ltd is a Nigerian information technology solutions company based in Abuja.
The company has been suspended for 50 months, while the MD is facing a 60-month sanction.
The Bank made the disclosure in a notice titled ‘World Bank Group debars SoftTech IT Solutions and Services Ltd. and its managing director, which was published on its website.
The corrupt practice is in connection with the National Social Safety Nets Project, according to the World Bank.
According to the bank, the project is designed to provide access to targeted cash transfers to poor and vulnerable households under an expanded national social safety nets system.
The World Bank said;
“The World Bank Group today announced the 50-month debarment of SoftTech IT Solutions and Services Ltd., an information technology solutions company based in Nigeria, and the 60-month debarment of its managing director, in connection with corrupt practices as part of the National Social Safety Nets Project in Nigeria.
“The debarments make SoftTech and Mr. Isah Kantigi, a Nigerian national, ineligible to participate in projects and operations financed by the World Bank Group.
“They are the result of settlement agreements under which the company and Mr. Kantigi acknowledge their responsibility for the underlying sanctionable practices and agree to meet specified corporate compliance conditions as a condition for release from debarment.
“According to the facts of the case, as an individual consultant, Mr. Kantigi made ‘appreciation’ payments to project officials as a reward for his receiving a Bank-funded consultancy services contract.
“Mr. Kantigi also entered into an arrangement with other individual consultants and facilitated similar payments by them to project officials. This constitutes a corrupt practice under the World Bank’s Consultant Guidelines.
“SoftTech, acting under the direction of Mr. Kantigi, who is also the company’s Managing Director, served as the conduit through which he and the other individual consultants made the payments to project officials.
“Under the arrangement, SoftTech received into its bank accounts multiple payments from the individual consultants and then transferred the funds into the personal accounts of the project officials, effectively serving as a financial intermediary for these consultants. This constitutes a corrupt practice under the World Bank’s Anti-Corruption Guidelines. “
The World Bank said the offense committed by both Kantigi and of SoftTech qualifies for cross-debarment by other multilateral development banks (MDBs) under the Agreement for Mutual Enforcement of Debarment Decisions that was signed on April 9, 2010.