Policy Alert, a Non-Governmental Organisation has chided the Akwa Ibom State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC), over its call on the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), to remodel its state secretariat for them.
The group, which says it is working for social, economic and environmental justice in the Niger Delta region, described the call as “self-serving, uncharitable, and preposterous”.
In a statement signed by the Communications and Stakeholder Engagement Officer, Nneka Luke, the NGO urged the Interim Administrator of the NDDC, to resist the temptation to misuse his office as a result of partisan pressures.
According to the statement, “The NDDC was established to facilitate speedy, equitable and sustainable development of the Niger Delta region in the face of the region’s peculiar ecological characteristics and the social and environmental injustices that have trailed oil and gas production in the Niger Delta over the years.
“However, in the last twenty years of its existence, the Commission has failed woefully to fulfill this mandate, a situation worsened by recent corruption scandals. We therefore find it self-serving, uncharitable, and preposterous for the Akwa Ibom State chapter of the ruling APC to ask the Interim Administrator to “utilize his office to remodel the party secretariat.”
“This is the kind of rotten, fraudulent and dangerously partisan thinking that has institutionalized corruption at the Commission and undermined its efficiency over the years.
“We call on the Interim Administrator to resist the temptation to sacrifice the mandate of the Commission and the development of Niger Delta citizens on the altar of partisan sentiments. What we expect from stakeholders, including political parties, at this time is to support the Interim Administration with ideas to improve the transparency, accountability, and efficiency of the Commission, rather than ideas that will reinforce the corrupt and inefficient status quo”.
The group also called on the NDDC to start publishing a quarterly expenditure report and details of all awarded and implemented contracts in machine-readable format on a publicly accessible portal.
It also reminded the boss of the interventionist agency, that using public funds meant for development of the region to satisfy partisan interests would amount to abuse of office and a violation of the oath he took to deliver on the core mandate of the agency, stressing that Nigerians are watching.