The Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio, has hinted that the Federal Government was opening a contemporary account for contractors who had been mobilised for Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) tasks however defaulted to return the sums or resume work instantly.
The Akwa Ibom ex-governor, who made the disclosure whereas receiving former agitators within the state on the weekend in Abuja, promised to reposition the interventionist company by making life higher for the people of the area, stating that he wouldn’t be deterred by the “campaign of calumny by faceless individuals who have benefitted over the years from the NDDC.”
He regretted that a lot cash had been given to the fee over time but “nothing commensurate is on the ground.”
Akpabio alleged that some people in authorities had been frightened by the forensic audit directed by President Muhammadu Buhari, sustaining that he was dedicated to enthroning accountability and good governance on the company.
He pledged that every one ex-agitators can be captured within the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP) and different empowerment programmes of the Muhammadu Buhari administration.
The minister reiterated his dedication to making the oil-rich space extra seen to international buyers, simply as he disclosed that additional industries had been earmarked for the area.
He charged the youths on viable financial ventures like fashionable palm oil factories, high-tech garment industries and productive agriculture exports by way of the amnesty project.
Earlier, the coordinator of the ex-agitators, Alfred Etuk, extolled the minister for his management, pledging partnership for sustainable peace and growth within the area.
Besides, the minister has dismissed an insinuation that he collected cash from an erstwhile chief govt of the company, Isima Ekere, or another particular person.
He described the allegation as “spurious and part of the conspiracy of those who have been milking the resources meant for the development of the Niger Delta for the past 19 years.”
In a statement yesterday, the minister mentioned: “It is part of their effort to frustrate the forensic audit of the accounts of the NDDC ordered by President Muhammadu Buhari. I did not receive any kobo from anyone in the NDDC or any other agency of government and would want anyone who has any claim to the contrary to come out openly to lay the fact bear before the public.”
Besides, the Niger Delta Civil Society Coalition (NDCSC) has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to mandate anti-graft companies to probe the award of water hyacinth contracts by the company.
Its chairman, Anyakwee Nsirimovu, mentioned the decision has turn into crucial owing to “ alleged existential fraud and corruption associated with the award of the contracts.”
However, a group, Niger Delta People Confederation (NDPC) yesterday rejected the interim committee arrange by the minister.
It additionally demanded his removing, accusing Akpabio of allegedly interfering with the affairs of the NDDC.
The NDPC faulted the composition of the three-man committee by the minister, urging the disbandment of the forensic audit panel, alleging that it was self-serving.
According to the group, “we are not against the forensic audit of NDDC as directed by President Muhammadu Buhari, but let the process be credible.”
Akpabio had last week lamented the “corruption and political interference disrupting the original purpose of setting up the NDDC.”