The Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, says International Oil Companies (IOCs) operating in Nigeria are owing the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) more than $4 billion.
Akpabio said this Thursday at the weekly ministerial briefing organised by the Presidential Communication Team at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The minister said none of the IOCs required to provide 3% of their annual budgets to the commission as their statutory contribution to its funding, had paid so far.
“All the international oil companies are owing and efforts are ongoing to recoup the money,” Akpabio said but he did not immediately provide further details.
The minister, who said NDDC on its part is owing contractors about N3 trillion, however, added that not all contracts awarded with costs could be regarded as debt.
According to him, the over N600 billion of emergency contracts that had been awarded had not been implemented and cannot, therefore, be regarded as NDDC debt.
Akpabio, while giving updates on the progress in the commission, said about 109 projects had been implemented Niger Delta states.
He said the NDDC diverted the sum of N10 billion from other projects to execute the East-West road in view of its critical importance to the people of the region.
Akpabio disclosed that he had written to President Muhammadu Buhari to include the project in Sukuk Fund so that it can be ready for commissioning during the lifespan of the present administration.
According to him, about N45 billion is needed to complete the road project.
The NDDC was established in 2000 to develop the oil-rich Niger Delta region, following agitations from the people of the region.