By Daniel Idonor
ABUJA – PRESIDENT Umaru Yarâ€™Adua yesterday inaugurated the new board of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), declaring that with a new board now in place, all is now set for a full-scale infrastructural development of the once-abandoned region.
The President stated that right from inception his administration had consistently identified as a major priority, the holistic resolution of the situation in the Niger Delta, hence the major steps it had taken to douse the tension and make way for the development of the area.
According to him, it was instructive that the inauguration of the NDDC board was done on the same day the implementation of the amnesty programme commenced and challenged the members to rise up to the occasion and be counted for their positive role in the resolution of the issue.
â€œThe comprehensive amnesty programme which is clearly on course, coupled with the fact that the NDDC Board is being inaugurated barely 48 hours after the receipt of notification of the Senateâ€™s clearance of the nominees, is indicative of the seriousness with which our administration views the Niger Delta situation.
â€œYou will recall that we had not only made the resolution of the Niger Delta question a key component of our Seven- Point Agenda, but had also taken the unprecedented step of creating a Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs to further underscore our commitmentâ€, he stated.
He explained that the issues involved in the Niger Delta question were of such magnitude that his administration could not afford to subordinate them to political or parochial considerations, promising everything would be done to entrench enduring peace and stability in the region and secure it for sustained development and economic growth.
In his acceptance speech, the chairman of the NDDC Board, Air-Vice Marshal Larry Koiyan (rtd) thanked the president for the opportunity given the members to serve, assuring him they would swing into action immediately in the discharge of their assignment.