Alleged corruption in NDDC: Ijaw group calls for Akpabio's sack

Alleged corruption in NDDC: Ijaw group calls for Akpabio's sack

- President Muhammadu Buhari has been urged to sack Senator Godswill Akpabio as a minister

- Akpabio, a former governor of Akwa Ibom state heads the Niger Delta ministry

- A group in the Niger Delta region says the minister has not performed in office since he was appointed

A group, Ijaw Development and Response Assembly have called for the sack of Senator Godswill Akpabio as the minister of Niger Delta.

The group said its call is due to the alleged corruption in Niger Delta Development Commission under Akpabio's ministry, Vanguard reports.

The group lamented that in spite of the enormous amounts of monies that have been released, NDDC continues to be plagued with gross mismanagement, indebtedness and multi-billion naira worth of abandoned projects.

The group further lamented that the NDDC is in its current state of quagmire and indebtedness because monies are being looted and syphoned.

“These phoney contracts are awarded without specifying an amount or contract sum, and at the point of payment, the executives in charge cook up any amount they deem fit, from hundreds of millions of naira to billions of naira, and these contracts are paid to their cronies within days of its concoction; without any verification whatsoever because most of these jobs are unverifiable.

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“The payment of these phoney contracts are prioritized because the monies are circling back to the corrupt executives, while payments of genuine contractors with jobs that have followed due process, have been completed and verified are ignored and left to suffer,” part of the statement signed by one Johnbosco Preye read.

The group said: “With the appointment of Chief Akpabio as the minister for Niger Delta affairs and the subsequent handover of the commission to his ministry for supervision, we thought that the so-called celebrated forensic audit ordered by Mr President would see an end to the looting through these phoney contract.

“Sadly, Chief Akpabio has instead taken advantage of the current rot within the NDDC and perfected existing small-scale looting, that he is supposed to investigate and flush out with the supposed forensic audit, to a full-blown open corruption mafia-style ring.

“Chief Akpabio has shamelessly taken up the same madness that began in 2016 to a higher level.”

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Recall that a group, South-south Emerging Leaders Forum (SELF) had expressed support for the presidential directive that a forensic audit is carried out at the NDDC.

The influential group said the move to carry out an audit of the NDDC by the Buhari administration is a commendable step.

SELF, however, threatened to expose those it described as “enemies of the south-south region, who have siphoned monies meant for projects and development in the zone.”

“All the former NDDC Managing Directors and fake contractors should be brought to book,” the group added.

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