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Mr. Chiedu Ebie, Chairman, NDDC Board

Frequent change of Board, Management, major obstacle to development – NDDC leadership

NDDC MD Dr. Ogbuku

The Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) says its major setback in the development of the region has been the frequent changes in the Governing Board of the Commission.

This is contained in a communique issued at the end of a two-day NDDC Board and Management Retreat with the theme: “Renewed Hope: A New Era for Vitality, Peace and Development.”

The communique which was signed by the Chairman, Governing Board of NDDC, Mr. Chiedu Ebie and the Managing Director, Dr Samuel Ogbuku was made available to newsmen in Uyo on Sunday.

The Communique appealed  to the Federal Government not to interrupt the current set up of the governing board of the commission to ensure adequate project execution and delivery.

The communique called for collaboration between the Ministry of Niger Delta Development, State Governments of Niger Delta region, NDDC and development partners to enhance the development of the region.

“The frequent changes in the Governing Board of the Commission have largely accounted for the challenges in project execution and delivery in the development of the region.

“Thus, the Federal Government should ensure that the current Board completes its tenure and that there is continuity in succeeding Boards to ensure sustainability of the Commission’s projects.

“There is need for proper synergy, collaboration and coordinating framework between the Ministry of Niger Delta Development, State Governments in the regions, the NDDC and development partners.

“That procurement is at the heart of governance and one of the government activities most vulnerable to corruption.

“Therefore, the Board and Management of the NDDC must effectively discharge their responsibility to manage the Procurement process involving all stakeholders, without sacrificing the core objectives as provided under the Procurement Act.

“There is the need for the urgent release of all outstanding statutory contributions of the Federal Government to the NDDC fund, as the non-release of these funds has significantly hampered the ability of the Commission to deliver on its mandate.

“A reviewed and updated Niger Delta Regional Developmental Masterplan remains a crucial framework for guiding and implementing development initiatives in the Niger Delta, as there can be no sustainable development without developmental plans,” communique stated.

The communique appealed to the federal government to see the need for some form of financial autonomy for the NDDC, outside the Treasury Single Account (TSA) regime.

It added, “This is as part of the process of getting the Commission take advantage of traditional credit sources in completing its projects and deliver real impact and sustainable development to the long suffering people of the region.”

The Communique urged the Board and Management to acquaint themselves with relevant rules, in order to effectively discharge the responsibilities imposed under extant laws.

The Communique urged the Managing Director of NDDC to take responsibility for all the procurement processes, stressing that such procurements must follow extant rules and laws.

According to the communique, there is need for strategic communication of the value added by the NDDC to its stakeholders, to change the negative perception about the Commission.

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