Faults Senate on confirmation of nominees
By Charles Kumolu
Rights activist, Chief Rita Lori-Ogbebor, has warned against opposition to the Interim Committee on Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, inaugurated by the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Sen Godswill Akpabio.
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She noted that the setting up of the panel is in order, adding that it should be allowed to supervise the commission ahead of the forensic audit ordered by President Muhammadu Buhari.
The minister had inaugurated the three-man committee to oversee the operations of the NDDC.
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Akpabio added that the panel would create an “enabling environment” for the audit.’’
Mr. Gbene Joi was made the acting Managing Director, while Cairo Ojougboh and Ibanga Bassey emerged as executive directors, projects and finance respectively.
Supporting the development, Lori-Ogbebor, described the opposition against it as self-serving.
She said: “On the interim committee, I want to thank Akpabio for inaugurating it. This is what should be done. He has saved the President the embarrassment arising from his failure to do what he promised.
“The committee would allow Buhari to do the proper things he promised. There is no way the embarrassing nomination and confirmation of the NDDC nominees can be morally justified. The senate is a major beacon in a democratic setting but they supported illegality by confirming the nominees. By doing so, the Senate placed the judiciary in a difficult position. Why did the Senate hurriedly confirm them when the President travelled out of the country? Why was the list of the nominees sent when the President left the country?
“The confirmation is against what Buhari promised to rectify. The Senate acted hurriedly as if Nigeria was going to stop existing. The Act establishing the NDDC is clear and everybody acknowledged that fact. The President accepted this fact two weeks ago when he ordered a probe of the NDDC from 2001—2019.
”He told the world that he would abide by the law that created NDDC after which he left for Saudi Arabia. He did not tell Nigerians the auditing firm that would carry out the probe. Suddenly, the names of nominees were sent to the Senate for confirmation. The Senate confirmed the nominees ignoring the fact that their nomination is being challenged in court.’’