Senator representing Delta North and Chairman Senate Committee on Niger Delta Affairs, Peter Nwaoboshi, has denied being a beneficiary of contracts awarded by the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
Reacting to the letter by the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio, to the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, where he listed names of some National Assembly Members as beneficiaries, Nwaoboshi said the Minister lied. He told the Minister and the Interim Management Committee of the NDDC to apologize to the people of Niger Delta for frittering away their resources.
He said: “Mr Akpabio alleged that I was awarded contracts for 53 NDDC projects. I wish to state unequivocally that this allegation has no bearing with the truth and challenge Mr Akpabio to send the so-called list to anti-graft and other security agencies if he can substantiate the apparently baseless allegation.
“Indeed I would have made further comments but for the fact that the matter is currently before two competent courts of law.
“However, suffice it to say that this unsubstantiated allegation is in line with Mr Akpabio’s well-known agenda to continuously blackmail me so as to keep diverting public attention away from the serious mismanagement of the NDDC by the Interim Management Committee (IMC) under his supervision and under the guise of a phantom forensic audit that has no operating timeline.
“My advice to Mr Akpabio and the IMC is to focus their energy on explaining to Nigerians how they spent a whopping N81.5b within a period of five months.”
Senator Nwaoboshi accused the interim management of wasting public fund meant for the development of the region on “useless projects that have no developmental impact on the life and livelihood of the Niger Delta people as envisioned by the founding fathers of the NDDC.
“Mr Akpabio and his IMC should apologise to the Niger Delta people in particular and Nigerians in general for this grand wastage arising from their crass incompetence. As a realist, I am confident that a day will come when Mr Akpabio and his IMC will have a date with the law.
“I will in the meantime express my unwavering commitment to improving the lots of our people in the Niger Delta, supporting quality legislation in the National Assembly and working for a society every Nigerian can be proud of. This is my mission in politics and I would not be distracted by the antics of political mudslingers and their agents. ”