President Muhammadu Buhari has been urged to inaugurate a substantive board for the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, now that Senator Godswill Akpabio has resigned as the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs.
A foremost Ijaw leader, Chief Julius Babogha, on Wednesday, June 1, 2022, during an interactive session with newsmen in Warri, Delta state, said the region has been waiting patiently for the past four years that the board was being run without a substantive board.
Babogha opined that there is nowhere in the constitution that the commission should be run by an administrator for good four years, instead of a substantive board, describing the appointment of the administrator as unconstitutional and can no longer be acceptable in the running of the commission.
He lamented that the stumbling block over the years has been the ex-Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, adding that now that he is out of the way, there should be no reason to delay the inauguration of the board.
Babogha said, “We are asking President Buhari to inaugurate the nominees screened and confirmed by the Senate for the board of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), on November 5, 2019.
“NDDC is an interventionist agency created for the development of the Niger Delta region, which produced the bulk of the economic mainstay of Nigeria, but now that Sen. Akpabio has eventually resigned, what else does President Buhari needs before he should inaugurate the board, as we cannot continue to be denied the region and her peoples their entitlement over the non-inauguration of the substantive NDDC board.
“We could remember when the president sent to the Senate in October 2019 a list of nominated persons for screening and confirmation into the NDDC board, over 2 years ago now and that yet there is no move to inaugurate the board for just no substantive reasons anybody knows about.
“President Buhari has not shown any interest on how the region is faring. Instead, they have continued to play politics with the inauguration, and this we say no to until the substantive commission is inaugurated for the purpose of in the region.”