President Muhammadu Buhari has directed all contributors of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) to remit all outstanding funds owed the Commission to enable it pursue its mandate of developing the Niger Delta region.
President Buhari gave the order in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, while commissioning the ultra modern 1050-bed space hostel built by NDDC and donated to University of Uyo.
He stated: “I want to use the opportunity of this commissioning to direct all statutory contributors to the NDDC to remit all outstanding funds to the Commission, because the Management has shown that it can manage its affairs with prudence, transparency and accountability.”
According to figures released by NDDC, the Federal Government and the oil companies owe the Commission N1.9 trillion and $4billion (about N2.2 trillion), respectively, according to the NDDC Establishment Act 2000.
President Buhari stated that “the forensic audit, which was completed a few months ago, is achieving one of its core objectives, adding: “That objective is to rebuild NDDC into an agency that is well equipped and better placed to facilitate sustainable regional development.”
He said that NDDC “should be given all necessary support it deserves from stakeholders and commended the Commission’s management, led by its interim administrator, Dr. Efiong Akwa, for a job well done.
In his welcome address, Dr. Akwa assured that there is a new spirit in the NDDC “permeating the Commission’s affairs and how it approaches its mandate of sustainable regional development.”
He stated: “It is a spirit, the New NDDC spirit, inspired by President Muhammadu Buhari and fuelled by the Honourable Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, which compels greater enthusiasm that we can deliver on our collective promise to the Niger Delta region and our people.”