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N81 billion fraud: NDDC boss blacks out during probe hearing

KEMEBRADIKUMO Pondei, the Acting Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) on Monday fainted during House of Representative investigative panel hearing held in Abuja.

Pondei lost consciousness while answering questions by the House Committee on NDDC over alleged misappropriation of funds.

He fainted after a member of the panel raised questions about N641 million naira paid to a particular Clear Point Communications and N536 million to another company for a campaign tagged Save Lives in the Niger Delta.

 

Pondei failed to mention the specific amount the commission received since his assumption of office as acting managing director on 28, February.

“From the Federal Government, we got about N6.4billion monthly since February. We’ve not had anything since June, and we also got little from oil companies about N72.billion between February 28 to June 20.”

However, the committee insisted that he should give a specific figure of the amount spent, and the unspent

According to a member of the panel, Pondei had told the Senate that the commission spent N1.5 billion naira to “take care” of themselves.

Pondei responded that only  N1.3 billion and not N1.5 billion was spent for the purpose.

He was resuscitated after a few seconds when his aides poured water on him, and was finally led out of the Chamber.

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The ICIR had reported how Pondei walked out on the investigative panel with claims that the Chair of the committee, Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo is an interested party in the NDDC.

Following his accusation, the committee chair stepped down, leaving the way for the vice-chairman of the panel, Thomas Ereyi-Tobi to preside over the hearing.

Pondei, a professor of Medicine from the Niger Delta University (NDU), Bayelsa State was announced as a replacement of the former NCDD Managing Director, Joi Nunieh.

 

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