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NDDC: Akpabio’s list is irrelevant, only accounts for 266 out of 5959 projects – Reps

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THE House of Representatives says the list of projects executed by the Niger Delta Commission (NDDC) sent by Godswill Akpabio, the Minister of Niger Delta, is irrelevant as it only accounts for 266 out of 5959 Niger Delta projects from 2018 to 2019.

The lawmakers said this via a statement on its official Twitter handle signed by Benjamin O. Kalu, the Spokesperson for the House.

The lawmakers faulted Akpabio for not publishing the list as earlier demanded instead sent an ‘irrelevant eight paragraph private letter to Femi Gbajabiamila, the Speaker of the House.

“Instead of publishing the list for the world to see in the interest of transparency, the Minister in his usual diversionary tactics chose to send an irrelevant eight-paragraph private letter to the Speaker regarding projects of 2018 which pre-date the 9th House of Representatives,” the statement read.

It is also instructive for Nigerians to note that the total number of projects in the 2019 NDDC budget was 5959 out of which 5416 projects were rolled over from 2018, which the 9th Assembly obviously had no influence or control over.”

The lawmakers said unable to prove his claims, Akpabio presented an ineffectual spreadsheet of only 266 projects out of which about 20 projects were attracted by past members of National Assembly as constituency projects, not as contractors, but in furtherance of their representative mandate.

They further stated that paragraph three of Akpabio’s letter ‘fully exonerated the Ninth Assembly’ and in paragraph seven; the minister withdrew his statement alleging that 60 per cent of contracts were awarded to members of the Ninth Assembly.

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According to them, the projects presented in the Minister’s letter were not within the scope of the investigation while he did nothing to address the leadership’s ultimatum for him to publish the list of names of the members who he claimed took 60 percent of NDDC projects from January to May 2020.

Members of the Green Chamber insisted that Akpabio should go public with his list and not send a private letter as earlier instructed in the ultimatum.

They reiterated that the Minister was given an ultimatum to publish names and not write a personal letter to the Speaker.

“The Honourable Minister is hereby cautioned to desist from spinning tales and is invited to go public as instructed,” the members demanded.

 

Lukman Abolade is an Investigative reporter with The ICIR. Reach out to him via [email protected], on twitter @AboladeLAA and FB @Correction94

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