The Ijaw Peoples Development Initiative, IPDI, a rights group, has described as strange the inclusion of Northern representatives on the board of Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, saying since North is not part of Niger Delta region, Federal Government should immediately delist them.
National President of the group, Mr. Austin Ozobo, who queried the composition of NDDC board, said in a statement, “It is also appalling that NDDC under President Muhmmadu Buhari is being politicized. One wonders what Northern representatives are doing in NDDC. If I may ask, is North now part of Niger Delta?
“Are Southerners or Niger Deltans represented in the Northeast Development Commission? If the answer is no, then all names of Northern representatives should be expunged from the current NDDC board, as the new board is faulty,” he asserted.
The group also complained about alleged short-changing of Ijaws in Delta state in the current board of NDDC.
It said: “. Ijaws in Delta State produce the highest quantum of oil in the midst of tribes that are now Buhari’s favorites in Delta State. They sidelined them in the previous Buhari NDDC board and now the same injustice is playing out.”
The group added, “It is not only disgusting, but hatred of Ijaws been displayed. We want the injustice and every illegality against Ijaws addressed. It is our demand that the Senate should suspend action on the new board pending when the government will deem it fit to address our plight, as it is capable of threatening the peace of the nation.”
On the recent happenings in NDDC, IPDI, said, “It is shocking, as we are beginning to wonder the source Senator Godswill Akpabio, Minister of Niger Delta’s unconstitutional powers, as there is no basis for another interim NDDC board, especially when names of substantive board is undergoing screening at the Red Chambers.”
“We fault Akpabio’s hasty NDDC interim management board or committee as it is illegal, baseless and unconstitutional. It is meant to serve personal interests and it is appalling that President Buhari’s government is turning NDDC to a trade union and a conduit pipe, leaving its primary objectives camouflaged with a fake audits.
“We reject Akpabio’s emergency interim board as it is a perceived attempt to loot and siphon public funds to personal treasury of few corrupt politicians.”