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Money for NDDC taken to Dubai, UK, Abuja, others — Onochie

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The new board of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) has resumed their job, raising different allegations.

The Chairman, Governing Board of the Commission, Lauretta Onochie, expressed dissatisfaction with the impact of the agency on the region, describing it as shameful not just to the Niger Delta region but to Nigeria in general.

Onochie declared that the money meant for NDDC and by extension development of Niger Delta was spent in Abuja, Lagos, United Kingdom, Dubai among others by people who were to develop the region, thereby putting the people in continuous poverty.

She made the disclosures when she addressed management and staff of the commission at its (NDDC) headquarters in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.

“Today is a historic day. I’m not just for the people of Niger Delta, but for the women of Nigeria. And being a historic day, we have a lot of things going on today.

“Like the MD had said earlier, he has said a lot I would have said. But, let me remind us why we are here. This (NDDC) is an organization, a commission that was commissioned specifically for the people of Niger Delta. It is an interventionist agency that is supposed to bring about prosperity; it is supposed to bring development in our region.

“This organization was set up in the year 2000. And, if you go round the Niger Delta till date, there is little or nothing to show for it. NDDC has been a shame of the Niger Delta and a shame of our nation. For the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration has been determined to turn things around.

“As I said yesterday, at our inauguration, he (Buhari) never does things in his own interest. Everything he does, he does in the interest of Nigerians. And this board you see here represents that interest.

“We are here to reposition NDDC. We are here to serve people of the Niger Delta and by extension people of Nigeria. We are here to do things differently.”

Onochie added that “When I returned from the diaspora in 2014 to join his (Buhari) campaign, what I heard everywhere was ‘that’s not how we do it here. Madam, this is not London; this is not UK’.

“We are going to do things differently and we don’t want to hear that story. We have come with ideas and I believe that each and everyone of you

Earlier, the new Managing Director/ Chief Executive Officer (MD/CEO) of the commission, Samuel Ogbuku, said it was an auspicious day, which witnessed official handing over from outgoing MD to the successor.

“Well, as a board that has just officially resumed today, at the NDDC headquarters, I want to first of all assure you that we are not to antagonize anybody. We are here to also depend on your experience. NDDC administration needs experience. We need your support; we need your cooperation.

“We are not here like one party handing over from one party. We are not here to fight anybody. We are all people from Niger Delta. I want all of you to be rest assured that, based on your competence, you are going to be working with this administration.”

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