Senate, NDDC in war of words as budget fraud allegations get messier

Senate, NDDC in war of words as budget fraud allegations get messier

- The National Assembly is in a war of words with the Interim Management Committee (IMC) of the NDDC

- On the one hand, the IMC is accusing the legislative arm of the federal government of corruption and padding the 2019 budget

- On the other hand, the Senate and the House of Representatives have claimed that the committee recklessly spent the sum of N40 billion

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Things are really getting messier between the National Assembly and the Interim Management Committee (IMC) of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).

The Senate and the House of Representatives have both set up ad-hoc committees to look into the allegation of reckless spending of N40 billion by the NDDC's IMC, The Nation reports.

On its part, the IMC has accused some principal members of the National Assembly of plotting and attempting to undo its forensic audit of the NDDC and of padding the 2019 budget.

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In fact, Cairo Ojougboh, the NDDC's director of projects, claimed that the heads of the agency's committee in the Senate, Senator Peter Nwaoboshi and Rep Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, “raised and vandalised” the commission’s 2019 budget.

Senate, NDDC in war of words as budget fraud allegations get messier

The Senate and the House of Representatives have claimed that the NDDC's IMC recklessly spent the sum of N40 billion
Source: Depositphotos

Ojougboh alleged: “If you look at what the two chairmen did in the National Assembly, all the regional projects of Mr President were removed from the budget. Look at what they infused and injected. The total sum that they brought is N85 billion worth of new projects.

“They removed annoyingly the regional projects of Mr President. When the forensic audit is concluded, Nigerians will be shocked."

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However, according to a report by Channels TV, Senator Ajibola Basiru, the chairman of the Senate committee on media and public affairs, dismissed the allegations of Ojougboh as unfounded.

Bashiru stressed that the National Assembly will not back down to embark on a probe into the activities of both the IMC and the NDDC.

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Meanwhile, Legit.ng reported that the Senate committee on Niger Delta affairs had responded to allegations levelled against it by Kemebradikumo Pondei, the acting managing director of the Niger Delt agency.

The upper chamber's panel said no amount of blackmail would stop the mandated probe of the commission's interim management committee.

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Source: Legit Newspaper

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