By Eric Ikhilae, Abuja
President Muhammadu Buhari and Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio have been commended for efforts to reform the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) for effective performance.
The commendation was handed out by a group, the Niger Delta Change Ambassadors (NDCA).
The group, in a statement, hailed the minister for his proactive efforts at curbing corruption in the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
NDCA urged President Buhari to remove the East West Road Budget from Sovereign Wealth Fund and return it to Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs to enable sections 1 to 4 to be completed to ease the suffering of the people of the region.
In the statement signed by the National Coordinator, Goodlive Elee and National Secretary, Derefaka Ajubo, the group pledged its allegiance to Akpabio, describing him as a transparent leader whose quest to stop corruption had brought him undue criticism.
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It stated that some of the act of corruption identified by Akpabio include payment of N300 million annually as rent for the past 23 years for the NDDC temporal headquarters building.
Others are payment of N500bn a year on water Hyacinth which was always awarded to their cronies, refusal of NDDC directors to go on leave so as to cover up their fraudulent tracks.
The group also commended the minister for capturing youths empowerment and other jobs meant for the youth in the budget since 2019 when he was the senate minority leader.
“That Godswill Akpabio is the 1st Minister to visit NDDC Headquaters to address the staff to refrain from misconduct and fraud, he is the first Minister to carry out verification before payment and stop upfront payment on fictitious contract without verification where contracts are not inflated.
“Mr. President should applaud the Minister for revealing that certain power brokers in NDDC are contracting their cronies to display dead fishes along the shores of Niger Delta all to discredit the Government of President Muhammadu Buhari.
“We applaud the MD for his co-operation with the Minister since the forensic audit,” the group said.