- The Senate committee on Niger Delta affairs has vowed to probe the NDDC
- The upper chamber also noted that no amount of blackmail would stop the committee
- The committee further said the allegations levelled against it by the commission were mere fabrications
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The Senate committee on Niger Delta affairs has responded to allegations levelled against it by Kemebradikumo Pondei, the acting managing director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
According to The Cable, the upper chamber's panel said no amount of blackmail will stop the mandated probe of the commission's interim management committee.
This was disclosed by Peter Nwaoboshi, chairman of the Senate committee while speaking with reporters on Wednesday, May 27.
Nwaoboshi said Pondei’s allegations are nothing but mere fabrications, adding that they don't need to panic if their hands are clean.
He went on to note that the allegations came because members of the IMC were asked to appear before the committee.
He said: “The national assembly has the right to appropriate and carry out oversight functions on the Niger Delta ministry, and the NDDC. So, no amount of intimidation or blackmail will stop us.”
Meanwhile, Legit.ng previously reported that Nelson Agbamuche, a high chief from Delta state, has distanced himself from the rift between the House of Representatives and the NDDC over allegations of financial improprieties.
Agbamuche in a statement he signed in Abuja on Wednesday, May 27, asked to be left alone as he has nothing to do with any of those allegations.
The Delta high chief made the plea after Dr. Cairo Ojuogboh, the executive director, projects of the interim management committee of Niger Delta commission, alleged that Agbamuche was a front for the Nigerian state on contracts.
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In a related development, the House of Reps has responded to allegations levelled against it by the NDDC.
The green chambers in a statement sent to journalists on Monday, May 25, by its spokesman, Honourable Benjamin Kalu noted that, contrary to claims by the federal agency that it delayed and padded the commission's 2019 budget, it only compelled the commission to do the needful and render account to the Nigerian people.
The executive director, projects, and member of the interim management committee, Ojougboh, in an interview on Arise Television, had alleged that the House delayed passage of the commission's budget and also "vandalized” the budget by adding ₦85 billion.
The lower house stated that the claims by Dr. Ojougboh were engineered to cast aspersions on its integrity and credibility.
In other news, the Nigerian Senate had begun a formal investigation of the NDDC over alleged corruption.
The Senate president, Ahmad Lawan, during plenary on Tuesday, May 12 announced the inauguration of the Senate ad-hoc committee that will carry out the investigation into the NDDC.
The Senate investigation was prompted by an allegation that a N40 billion fraud was carried out in the NDDC which is under the supervision of the minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio.
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