Ex-militants: Lawmakers linked to NDDC graft must face trial

Niger Delta ex-militants at the weekend appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to ensure that federal lawmakers indicted for corrupt practices in the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) were arrested and tried before the end of his tenure.

The ex-militants told the President that the only way to sanitise the commission was to ignore the ongoing shenanigans of some members of the National Assembly and ensure completion of the forensic audit of the NDDC.

The former creek warlords, under the auspices of the 21st Century Youths of the Niger Delta and Agitators with Conscience (21st CYNDAC), said it was the first time the management of the commission would name and shame persons hindering operations of NDDC.

Speaking in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, the Leader of CYNDAC and self-styled General Izon Ebi asked the President not to allow the cacophony of corrupt voices truncate the ongoing forensic audit.

Ebi said: “The major reason for the kangaroo inquisition of the commission by the National Assembly is because the interim management committee of the commission for the first time has been able to name and shame members of the National Assembly that have made the commission the headquarter of their looting project.

“For the first time, people of integrity have stood up to say no to the serial rape and plunder of the commission that has been unabated over the years, it is totally unacceptable that people voted to represent us are those using their exalted positions to loot the Niger Delta to stupor, after collecting humongous salaries and allowances, they also pad and collected about 90% of jobs and contracts in the commission with payments, without executing same.

“These same people, seeing that the game is up, are employing every underhand tactic to truncate the forensic audit using blackmail of the minister of Niger Delta and the IMC of the NDDC as a case point.

We have always been clamouring for the supervision of the NDDC by the Ministry of the Niger Delta so as to check the activities of some National Assembly members and other tin gods in the Niger Delta who see the commission as a theatre to display their influence”.

Ebi said it was sad that the NDDC created to ameliorate the socio-economic plight of the Niger Delta became a cesspool of corruption singularly perpetrated by National Assembly Members.

“Since the creation of the commission from the days of OMPADEC, why is it now that the National Assembly is awake to their overnight functions, is it because of the stoppage of revenue collection scam or the rent scam? Is it because of perennial training scams, running into billions that cut a shock of the commission budget?” He queried.

He added: “We use this medium to plead with Mr. President not to be distracted by the corrupt voices that want to truncate the forensic audit that has been instituted by this administration to clean up the NDDC and bring these rogues to face the law.

“We also plead with Mr. President that under no circumstance should the commission be left floundering with no supervision from the ministry of Niger Delta, as this is the lacuna these rogue agents used to subject the management of the commission to their whims and caprices, which has always been truncating the reason for setting up the commission.

We also plead with Mr President to set up a proper legal and governance framework to shield the management of the commission from these Assembly members”.

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