By Akpokona Omafuaire
WARRI—THE WATCHMAN, a group of Deltans committed to the peaceful and rapid economic growth of oil communities in the state, has given a seven-day ultimatum to the Delta State House of Assembly, to investigate the Interim Management Committee, IMC, of Delta State Oil Producing Communities Development Commission, DESOPADEC, set up by the state government, over alleged corruption, poor administration and incompetence.
The goupp is demanding that the purported new appointments made by IMC be cancelled and be withdrawn within seven days, failing which they would resort to self defence by shutting down all oil wells in the areas.
According to the Watchman, the state Governor should, within seven days, forward to the state House of Assembly, a list of new nominees after due consultation with HOSTCOM to be appointed as chairman and cembers of the new commission board as the law setting up DESOPADEC does not recognise IMC which, they alleged, is worse than the former board.
The petition by Mr Umukoro Onoriode, Mr Uzezi Aruteyan, Mr Utieyin Oritsetimeyi, Mr Preye Ebilade and Mr Ossai Olisamaka, which was sent to the Speaker, Mr Sam Obi, stressed that since inception, “DESOPADEC has made some laudable achievement in the areas of infrastructural development, human capital development, education support programmes, free medical services and microcredit scheme.
They queried the “rationale behind the retention of Mr Edema Tsewo, and one Mr. Larry, two political appointees of the former board and sack all others, if not because they are the Governor’s relatives?”
That why did the IMC retained Mr. A.O.Tebekaemi, former political appointee to the former Chairman and E.O.Ojuederie, two retirees as newly appointed Directors to Head Administration and Social services departments respectively?
The group also ask the DTHA to unravel the appointment of Mr. Tonwe Henry, a 70 year old American retiree, how monies collected for security votes, travelling allowances, supplies and commercialization of Directors, Deputies and Heads of Units as some were alleged to pay for their appointment.
It tasked the DTHA to force the IMC to explain the removal of several qualified Urhobo people and replaced with Itsekiri people if not for tribal sentiments.
WATCHMAN said it was saddened that without consultation from the leadership of HOSTCON whose resources are used to run DESOPADEC, the pioneer board was dissolved.
WATCHMAN expressed optimism that the DTHA will do what is right and just by urgently calling the IMC to order before the state goes up in flame.