NDDC: Lack of Substantive Board Impeding Devt in Niger Delta, Group Tells Buhari

NDDC: Lack of Substantive Board Impeding Devt in Niger Delta, Group Tells Buhari

Olusegun Samuel in Yenagoa

A group, the Niger Delta Youths Leadership Forum (NDYLF), has attributed the ‘ground zero’ activities of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) in the region to the non-appointment of a substantive board for the interventionist agency, declaring that President Muhammadu Buhari can only finish strong in the region when a substantive board of the commission is set up and working to meet the aspirations of the region.

The group, made up of youth leaders from the six states of the region, called on Buhari to confirm the appointment of Col. Milland Dixon Dikio (rtd) as the substantive coordinator of the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP) because of his performance and coordination of the amnesty office as Interim Administrator

According to the group, the Amnesty office under Dikio has witnessed a paradigm shift in the programme in terms of relative peace across the region, change in the mindset of ex-agitators on the need for self-reliance through entrepreneurship, engagements with stakeholders, scholarship to ex-agitators to some of the best institutions within the country and his credible performance record is still counting.

The National Coordinator of the group, Mr. Richard Akinaka, said the performance of the Niger Delta Development Commission is not about the person in charge at the moment but about the need for a substantive board to pilot the affairs of the commission.

According to him, “The Niger Delta under President Buhari has become a neglected people. The lack of a substantive board has impeded the development of the region. The people no longer have an input in the affairs of the NDDC.”

Akinaka noted that people are considering Buhari’s attitude towards the NDDC board as deliberate show of malice toward the Niger Delta region.

“The NDDC, as it is now, is a disservice to the people of the region. Buhari should prove to the people of the region that he does not have malice and disgust toward the people of the region,” he said.

He also pointed out that the politicians appointed from the region as supervising ministers of the region have not helped matters, as “those struggling to get appointed as supervising ministers are only out to exploit their people. It has become so bad that the commission over the years has been under the mercy of supposed leaders of the region in this government. The NDDC is at ground zero because of lack of a substantive board. The president will do a lot of service to the region if he gives the needed attention to these issues.”

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