Group kicks against moves by bigwigs to thwart NDDC audit


A group under the aegis of Niger Delta Network has kicked against pressure by some individuals and organisations to scuttle the proposed personnel audit of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).

In a statement made available to newsmen in Uyo on Monday, the Director of Public Communication to the group Dr John Douglas said the annexation and the audit process were directives from the presidency.

NDDC office - group kick over plans to twart personnel audit

Recalled that groups had sponsored media reports against the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs Obong Umanah Okon Umanah accusing him of attempts to annex the commission.

The statement titled: “Re’ Attempt by the Ministry of the Niger Delta Affairs to Annex NDDC is illegal, Unlawful and shall be strongly resisted” described the alleged annexation of the NDDC personnel audit as baseless

It reads in parts: “We have read with amusement, the above sponsored press statement against the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Mr Umana Umana, alleging an attempt to annex the NDDC to MNDA.

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“No one whose recruitment is legal, lawful and legitimate, will oppose or fret over a Ministerial directive for a personnel audit of the NDDC”

“It can no longer be business as usual for unscrupulous persons who used NDDC funds to finance personal or sectional interest, vowing “time to do things differently starts now.

“It is on record that the annexation of the commission was initiated by the presidency. The transfer of the supervisory role of the NDDC from the office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, to the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs, did not start under Mr Umana Umana.”

The Director of Public Communication explained that there is a new dawn in both the NDDC and Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs adding that It can no longer be business as usual.

He stated that unlike in the past when corruption was a direct principle of State policy where   NDDC funds were used to finance personal or sectional interest as the time to do things differently has begun.

He disclosed that except those who perpetrated and benefited from the faulty and fraudulent staff recruitment exercise will be happy while lovers of good governance will attest that the ongoing reforms are meant to ensure that processes and procedures are transparent, and followed due process.

“Abuse of office and public trust must give way to due process, transparency, accountability.”

He solicited support from Niger Delta stakeholders to the Minister of Niger Delta Obong Umanah Okon Umanah in his strategic Ministerial Action Plan of ensuring among others, the review of disproportionate recruitment of staff during the COVID-19 lockdown.

Douglas maintained that the action of the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs to audit the NDDC personnel was based on petitions over irregular promotions and deployment of staff in the Commission including the compilation/Publication of list of all completed projects in the NDDC awaiting payments for public scrutiny.

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