Niger Delta youths commend NASS over screening of NDDC board
Wants SGF to oversee board
By Dirisu Yakubu
The Niger Delta Youth Council, NDYC, Friday lauded the National Assembly (NASS) for successfully screening the 16-member Board of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, recently appointed by President Muhammadu Buhari.
The Council also advised government to inaugurate the board without delay insisting that the constitution of a caretaker committee for the commission was diversionary and unnecessary.
It could be recalled that President Buhari on August 27, nominated new board members for the interventionist agency for the oil-rich region, with Mr Bernard Okumagba from Delta State as managing director designate and Chief Pius Odubu from Edo State as chairman. But while the board was awaiting confirmation of the National Assembly, the Minister of Niger Delta affairs inaugurated an interim committee to man the Commission.
In a statement signed by Jator Abido, national coordinator NDYC, Comr Chinedu Livinus Rivers State Coordinator NDYC and Chief George Kpesu a Stakeholder, the group said it viewed the setting up of an interim committee at a point an authentic board was appointed as not only mischievous but an attempt to institute illegality in the agency that has been for long converted to a cash cow for few to the detriment of the region.
“We wish to reaffirm our support and loyalty to Mr President for appointing people of integrity with proven competencies to steer the ship of the NDDC. We herewith commend the President for forwarding the names of the nominees to the National Assembly for screening and confirmation.
“We equally thank the National Assembly for doing the needful and further appeal for support by way of strengthening the relevant laws that will ensure that Commission is properly situated to deliver the goods.
“To this extent, we herein make a cases that the NDDC be under the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF)”, the statement noted.
It further explained that it staged protests in Port-Harcourt, the Rivers state capital to register its grevience with the ploy by some self serving elites to hold on to the Commission for their selfish interests.
“Let it be clear to those who feel they will continue to hold the Niger Delta region captive that the time is up for them. We are determined to see a change for our region and will not be intimidated by the antics of the cabal.
“After failing to get the buy in of Mr President through malicious sponsored protests and smear campaign against the Board, they have now come under the guise of interim committee. We say this too will fail as President Muhammadu Buhari is committed to the development of the region,” it added.
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