Again, Senate probes alleged N6.2bn NDDC palliative mismanagement

Senate

The Senate, on Thursday, summoned the newly-appointed sole administrator of the Niger Delta Development Commission, Effiong Akwa.

The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), a few days ago, sacked the Prof. Kemebradikumo Pondei-led Interim Management Committee and appointed Akwa as the new interim administrator of the NDDC.

The invitation of Akwa was announced by the Chairman, Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petition, Senator Ayo Akinyelure.

Akinyelure was reacting to the submission of a petitioner, High Chief Sobomabo Jackrich, who claimed to be the Chairman of the NDDC Covid-19 Palliatives Distribution Committee.

Jackrich had in a written petition before the Senate panel, alleged that Pondei and his team mismanaged food items and medical items valued at N6.2bn meant for distribution to the people of the nine mandate states of the oil rich region.

Akinyelure became furious when he asked if the management of the NDDC was represented at the panel and the secretariat of the committee explained that nobody represented the team despite their formal invitation.

He said, “We are giving them (new team) the last warning to appear before the committee or we would recommend their removal.

“They should come and account for the N6.2bn Covid-19 fund approved by the Federal Government for palliative, which their predecessors mismanaged.

“The petitioners are alleging that neither the funds not the materials bought with it was made available to the beneficiaries based on their investigation.”

A member of the panel, Senator James Manager, said the interim management had just been inaugurated, hence the inability of the members to come.

Akinyelure disagreed with him and said the fact they were newly-sworn in should not be an excuse for their absence.

“We are also summoning the immediate past IMC team to explain how they spent the fund meant for the people of Niger Delta,” he stated. Punch

 

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