Group Urges NDDC to Move Planned PPP Summit to Niger Delta

Sylvester Idowu in Warri

Community Development Committees of Niger Delta Oil and Gas Producing Areas (CDCNDOGPA) has prevailed on the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) to move its planned Public Private Partnership (PPP) summit slated for Lagos State to any of the Niger Delta states.
The group stated that though the summit was necessary, fixing the hosting venue outside the Niger Delta region where the stakeholders would not feel and observe the challenges in the area, does not make economic and business sense.

CDCNDOGPA, in a statement issued yesterday and signed by its Executive Chairman, Board of Trustees, Joseph Ambakederimo, noted that the Niger Delta region would have been most appropriate place to host the summit noting that the money to be expended would have stayed in the area to stimulate the economy.

“The Niger Delta region would have been most appropriate place to host the summit. The money to be expended would have stayed in the region to stimulate the economy.
“Business owners in the region that would have made monetary gains would be denied such patronage if it holds in Lagos as scheduled.
“Hosting the summit outside of the Niger Delta region does not make any economic and business sense altogether. While we have been agitating for many years calling for relocation of the headquarters of the international oil and gas companies the region with no success, hosting the summit in Lagos by NDDC will reinforce their non challant attitude towards our demands,” he said.

The group therefore called for the cancelation of the summit by the commission adding, “it is our wish that the PPP summit been organised by the NDDC should be called off at this time. In as much as we applaud the initiative the timing and host city is wrong.”
CDCNDOGPA also noted that organising the summit, at this time, was a misplaced priority, stressing that the summit ought not to have been conceived in the first instance.
“It is not well thought out. Therefore, the summit must be suspended until first things are done,” he added.
The group maintained that what should be of concern to the leadership of the NDDC, at this time, was how best to redeem the image of the commission that have been battered over the years.
“The mention of NDDC leaves a repugnant taste in the mouth. Now the reality in the Niger Delta region, in the upland creeks, the inter land and even worldwide is a general feeling of apathy and indifference to the workings and vision of the NDDC.

“The commission can only win if it has the buy-in and support of the people of the region if they collectively take ownership of the commission and join hands to achieve the Niger Delta Masterplan. The people should be engaged in the process of choosing, executing and supervising of projects as it was in the beginning.

 “Years of mismanagement and continued massive misappropriation of the NDDC funds under this new management have eroded citizen’s interest in the affairs of the commission. The record has to be set straight; the people should be convinced with proof of achievement that the NDDC wasn’t a total failure before the commission can bounce back.

 “Therefore, to rebirth the NDDC is to first have the buy-in of the people. The management must earn the trust of the people, business must be seen to be conducted transparently, probity and accountability must be the watch word. It is moly when people see these things manifest we can now say we rewinding to rebirth,” it added.

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