Nigerians across the Niger Delta region and a group of Nigerians based in North America (United States of America and Canada), under the aegis of the Niger Delta Patriotic Alliance (NDPA) have called on the Federal Government and oil multinationals operating in the Niger Delta region to expedite action on the release of trillions of naira owed to the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
The NDPA, in a statement issued via electronic mail and made available to newsmen in Yenagoa, argued that the unpaid funds have impacted negatively in the smooth running of the commission by the Interim Administrator, Mr. Effiong Akwa and led to untold hardship and deaths of many contractors being owed by the commission.
The Secretary-General of the NDPA, North America chapter, Washington DC, Mr. Kenneth Friday, argued that the rising dis-enchantment among the people of the region and the discontent displayed towards the ruling administration of President Muhammadu Buhari is caused by the lack of visible activities in the region and ghost presence of the commission in the last few years.
He called on President Buhari to have a rethink of the open display of malice and discontent towards his APC led administration and develop rigorous developmental policies towards the Niger Delta region. “Those mis-advising Mr. President did not also inform him that due to his shoddy policy, many contractors have died and it has caused deep rooted resentment towards him and his administration. People are suffering severe hardship across the region.”
On the need to properly empower the Interim Administration Mr. Effiong Akwa, the NDPA argued that President Muhammadu Buhari should endeavor to release needed funds to offset outstanding debts of the NDDC and allow credible contractors and their families to recover from bank loans and debts used to service contracted jobs for the commission.
Mr. President, you must have observed that for almost Seven (7) Years of the life of your Administration, you have not constituted a substantive NDDC Board for the commission despite the decision of the key stakeholders to keep the peace in the region. The people in the Niger Delta region are not happy with your administration’s decision to toy with a commission that contributes to contentious issues of development, empowerment and other economic activities in the region.
We urge you to retain the Interim Administrator, Mr. Effiong Akwa until a Substantive Board is appointed, and we want to point out that the appointment of a Substantive NDDC Board will provide a wider representation across the Niger Delta region which will expedite Economic Growth and Development.
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