The Niger Delta Youth Council (NDYC) has chided governors of the
region for criticizing President Muhammadu Buhari over the
newly-constituted board of the Niger Delta Development Commission
(NDDC), alleging that the Act empowering the commission required them
to make inputs.
Media reports indicate that South-South governors had summoned an
emergency meeting over the members-designate of the board of the NDDC
made public on Tuesday by the presidency.
The governors, according to reports, claimed that politics was the
only consideration used in selecting members of the new board adding
that it runs contrary to the provisions of the NDDC Law.
But the Niger Delta Youth Council in a statement signed by its
National Coordinator Jator Abido, Secretary, Kede Michael, and Chinedu
Livinus, Rivers State Coordinator NDYC, challenged the governors of
the region to give an account of their stewardship saying that they
were responsible for the poor state of affairs in the region.
“We challenge the governors to individually and collectively give
account of their stewardship.
“It is sad that the governors have failed to embark on meaningful
initiatives and projects that benefit the region over the years but
have rather concentrated on building personal empires to the detriment
of the region.
“We have been in the vanguard agitating for better deals for the
region from the Federal Government and when consideration is given to
the region the governors divert the proceeds to their private pockets.
“The Niger Delta produces the wealth of this nation but has remained
the least developed no thanks to our governors. We have over the time
called for a probe of the NDDC management right from its inception.
“Independent findings have revealed that the governors who influenced
appointments in NDDC board in the past, apart from mismanaging state
funds also partook in sharing funds of the commission meant for
“It is unfortunate that the governors now find it convenient to
criticize the president for appointing people of impeccable characters
that would oversee the development of the region.
“We challenge the governors to point out the part of the Act
establishing NDDC that mandates the state governors to make inputs in
the appointment of Boards in a federal system”, the statement added.
The group further urged the president to disregard what it described
as ranting by the state governors saying they were confident that the
members of the new Board would deliver on their mandate.
The 16 member board has Dr. Pius Odubu from Edo State as Chairman and
Mr. Bernard Okumagba from Delta State, as the Managing Director.
The board members are Otobong Ndem from Akwa Ibom, who would serve as
the Executive Director, Projects, and Aisha Muhammed from Kano State
representing North-West on the board.
Others are Maxwell Okoh from Bayelsa State; Jones Erue from Delta
State; Victor Ekhatar from Edo State; Joy Nunieh from Rivers State;
Nwogu Nwogu from Abia State; Theodore Allison from Bayelsa State;
Victor Antai from Akwa Ibom State; Maurice Effiwatt from Cross River
State; Olugbenga Elema from Ondo State and Uchegbu Kyrian from Imo
State, News Agency of Nigeria reports.