A former Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress, Timi Frank, has congratulated the newly inaugurated management of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) led by Lauretta Onochie as chairman and Mr Samuel Ogbuku as managing director.
Frank in a statement in Abuja urged the new board to prioritise the interest and development of the Niger Delta region.
He reminded the board that NDDC should not be construed as an appendage of the ruling APC but as a special purpose vehicle meant to ameliorate the sufferings of the people due to long years of neglect and environmental degradation brought about by the activities of oil exploration, production and spillage.
He called on the new board to urgently make public the report of the forensic audit of the agency carried out last year for “the purpose of accountability, transparency and to set the tone for good corporate governance and zero tolerance for corruption under their watch.”
“The new board must demonstrate a clean break with the sordid past of the agency by urgently making the report, findings and recommendations of the forensic audit carried out last year in the agency public.
“The exercise was carried out with taxpayers’ money and all Nigerians, especially the people of the Niger Delta, deserve to know why the agency became a personal estate for a few eggheads instead of the generality of the people of the Niger Delta region,” he added.
Frank also called on the board not to politicise the activities of the agency, urging it to carry the communities and all critical stakeholders in the region, especially the youths, along throughout their tenure.
He lamented that despite the noble objectives for setting up the agency as clearly enunciated in the Act establishing the Commission, past managements have turned the place into a cash cow for a few politicians both within and outside the region.
He urged the Managing Director of NDDC to bring his wealth of experience, professionalism and integrity to bear in the administration of the agency.
Frank also called on the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) to urgently investigate the tenure of the immediate past sole administrator and last acting MD of the Commission.