Groups under the auspices of the Civil Society Coalition on Audit in Nigeria, CSCAN, has asked the Public Accounts Committees of the National Assembly and Anti-Corruption Agencies to look into 176 contracts awarded by the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, for which N90.9bn is yet to be accounted for.

Speaking at a press briefing on Tuesday in Abuja on behalf of CSCAN, Executive Director, Paradigm Leadership Support Initiative, PLSI, Olusegun Elemo, said findings showed that the NDDC awarded the contracts between 2008 and 2018, adding that based on data from 2008-2012 and 2013-2018 Audit Report on NDDC, it was obvious that N90.9bn was yet to be accounted for the contracts awarded by the commission.

While lamenting that many of the projects were either abandoned, poorly implemented or not executed at all, Elemo said the review of the data and on-ground assessment of project sites carried out by the group revealed how the NDDC had wastefully been managing resources belonging to citizens of the Niger Delta region.

“We have visited many of the project sites, we have pictorial evidence, we have identified the companies involved as well as beneficial ownership details.

“All we are asking the National Assembly Public Accounts Committees, Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to do is take a professional, detailed and investigative look at this evidence and recover the funds,” he added.

Also, Deputy Manager, BudgIT Foundation, Tolutope Agunloye, noted that over N500 billion was earmarked as statutory allocation to improve the development of the Niger Delta region between 2008 and 2018.

“To execute its projects and programs, NDDC receives annual statutory allocations from the country’s federal government and an annual levy of 3% of the total annual budget of oil companies in the country. It also receives grants and other forms of support from International Development Agencies.

“However, despite the expenditure of approximately $40 billion on capital projects by NDDC since its inception, the commission has failed to realize its 15-year master plan for the rapid development of the region,” he said.

The coalition also includes the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, SERAP, Centre for Health, Equity and Justice, CEHEJ and the Centre for Social Justice, CSJ.

 


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