By Wale Akinola
President Muhammadu Buhari has been urged to reverse new appointments in the Niger-Delta Development Commission (NDDC). Oodua Nationalist Coalition, ONAC, urged Buhari to reverse the list submitted to the National Assembly and appoint a technocrat Yoruba of Ondo State extraction as Managing Director of the NDDC.
In a petition sent to the President, ONAC said the appointments are skewed to the detriment of Ondo State, which is the 5th largest oil producing state in the country.
“We condemn in very strong terms the failure of you the President to appoint an indigene of Ondo State as the Managing Director of the NDDC. Mr President sir, instead, you appointed both the Chairman and the Managing Director from Akwa Ibom and Cross River States which remain the stronghold of the Peoples Democratic Party, (PDP) which voted and campaigned against your government in the last elections,” ONAC said in the petition signed Dr Ahmed Adeluyi on behalf of 35 Yoruba groups. Some of the groups include the Oodua Liberation Alliance (OLA), Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC), Yoruba Professional Association (YOPA), Yoruba Christian-Muslim Youth Association (YOCMY).
The group said the non-appointment of a technocrat from Ondo to lead the NDDC is unacceptable to the Yoruba people and runs against the spirit of fairplay and justice for the people of Ondo which is the only oil producing state that has not taken up arms to disrupt oil production in the country. The coalition said it dispatched the letter of protest to Buhari to jettison the list before the National Assembly “for equity, fairness and justice.”
“Ondo produces about 18% of Nigerian oil output. Because of the disruptive activities of the militants, the state, which used to be 5th on the production list, is now No 4 on the list of the oil producing states”, it explained.
“Ilaje is the only local government that produces oil in Yorubaland apart from the new found oil in Lagos . The best way for Buhari to even the age long injustice against the Yoruba oil producing communities is to appoint a technocrat of Ilaje extraction as the new head of the NDDC”.