By Henry Umoru
MINISTER of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio told the Senate yesterday that if the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC must address the challenges of the Niger Delta region, it has become very imperative for both the Senate and the House of Representatives to closely monitor the Budget of the agency.
Speaking yesterday in Abuja when he appeared before the Senator Olubunmi Adetunmbi, All Progressives Congress, APC, Ekiti North led Ad-hoc that was probing the alleged financial recklessness to the tune of N40 billion by the Interim Management Committee, IMC, of the NDDC, between January and March this year, Akpabio stressed the urgent need for synergy between the National Assembly, the federal government and the interventionist agency for a total overhauling of the budgetary procedures of NDDC.
Akpabio who appeared before the Committee on the last day of the investigative public hearing, charged the National Assembly to check against what he described as abuses of the budgeting procedures of the Commission, adding that there were instances where money budgeted had been drastically and illegally reduced by some members of the National Assembly against the originally approved fund.
Meanwhile the immediate past Managing Director of NDDC, Dr Yimebe Nunieh at the Investigative hearing, however declared that out of the entire N81billion spent by the Commission between October 29, 2019 to May 31, 2020, only N8billion was spent by IMC under her leadership between October 29, 2019 to February 28, 2020.
On his part, the incumbent Managing Director, Professor Kemebradikumo Pondei however threatened to resign if allegations of corruptions levelled against his team of IMC, proved to be true.
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