By Chris Ochayi, ABUJA

The Institute of Chartered Economists of Nigeria, ICEN, has faulted Chief Government Ekpemupolo, aka, Tompolo over a 7-day ultimatum on the constitution of the board for Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC.

South South Coordinator of ICEN, Mr. Friday Udoh, said in a statement issued Thursday in Abuja that demanding of substantive board for the Commission by without any cogent interment would retard achievements recorded at the NDDC in the recent times.

Mr. Udoh warned that any board cannot assist in defining the agency’s problem and subjecting it to chaotic start would amount to drawing back to status quo.

He, therefore, charged the supervising minister of NDDC, the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswil  Obot  Akpabio,  to fast-track the constitution of the board.

Udoh noted that, “Though  Tompolo as a stakeholder is plausible, it was  unnecessary  yet immaterial  and impossible for any succession  program when already available Forensic Audit report  to measure the vulnerability of the Commission  was underway  to provides the new board  with risks, the liabilities and the weaknesses  in the commission’s  administrative process.

“The report will considerably aid them to adopt a right approach in dealing with the troubled regional intervention agency sustainably.

“A chaotic start of a new board will make it impossible for  any  of  the stakeholders to hold  the new board   accountable  for their action.”

He maintained that the Act establishing the commission provided among other things that the activity of the commission be administered by a board comprising a Chairman, Managing Director, Executive Directors and Commissioners drawn across   the nine states that made up the region at the same time the Act is silent in an event of any ugly events.

“If there is any blame accorded to someone on the inability of the Commission in meeting its primary objectives, it should be   the complacency and undue influence of the stakeholders on the management of the Commission.

“While  he ascribed the riots in the Commission  as ” endemic and protracted,  literally , this is traced to  the  early start of the Commission  which saw  contracts being  awarded for political considerations  through political patronage  and   money paid for unexecuted  programs  either in full or part.

“In most cases, the projects are poorly executed, delayed or outrightly abandoned. Hence, making   the vilification of the Senator Godswil  Akpabio inappropriate.”

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