A civil advocacy movement, Niger Delta Progressive Network (NDPN) has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to keep to his promise to the Niger Delta people by inaugurating a substantive board of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
The group, who joined the long list of individuals, groups, stakeholders that have demanded for a substantive NDDC board, urged the President to go ahead with the inauguration of the board nominees that have already been screened and cleared by the Senate.
The NDPN also recalled that Buhari had assured to inaugurate the NDDC following the submission of the audit report of the commission, urging the president to fulfil his promises.
This was contained in a statement jointly signed by its National Chairman, Kaniye Amakiri and National Secretary, Asuquo Inyang.
The group, in the statement urged Buhari to inaugurate the members immediately as it will allow for infrastructural developments of the Niger Delta region. The group further added that the inauguration of the board will tackle the issues of militancy that has been disturbing the peace of the region.
Recall that the NDDC had been without a board following the dissolution of the agency’s board in 2019. Since the dissolution, Chief Bernard Okumagba was nominated as Managing Director of the Commission and had been screened and confirmed by the Senate. Also, the Senate had screened and confirmed other 14 nominees to occupy the governing board position including Dr. Pius Odubu who was nominated as Chairman of the board.
However, rather than inaugurate the substantive board as confirmed by the Senate, an interim Sole Administrator was appointed to manage the commission with the President saying that the board would be inaugurated after an internal probe on the affairs of the NDDC is completed.
Meanwhile, The New Diplomat had reported that the audit report had been submitted to the President by the Minister for Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio. In the audit report, it was revealed a total of N6trillion had been mismanaged in the coffers of the NDDC since inception.
Also, it was revealed in the report that a total of 13,000 projects had been abandoned in the Niger Delta region since the creation of the agency.
[9:01 PM, 10/2/2021] Dotun Akin: Abiola