President Muhammadu Buhari has on Thursday in Abuja, ordered a forensic probe itno the operations of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
Buhari wants a probe of the finances of NDDC beginning from 2001 till date. The NDDC was established by formr President Olusegun Obasanjo but Buhari doesn’t think projects on the ground in the region are commensurate with the amount of money that has been disbursed.
The order was given in reaction to persistent criticisms of the operations of the organisation from 2001 to 2019.
“I have ordered a forensic audit of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC). With the amount of money the federal government has allocated to the NDDC, we‘d like to see the results on the ground; those that are responsible for that have to explain certain issues,” President Buhari said in a tweet.
He added “the projects that are said to have been done must be verifiable. One cannot just say billions have been spent and when the sites are visited, there is nothing to be seen as proof of work done. The forensic audit will cover the NDDC’s operations from 2001 to 2019.”
Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, in a statement, said the president’s order came while receiving a delegation of leaders from the nine states that make up the Niger Delta led by Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State.
“I try to follow the Act setting up these institutions especially the NDDC. With the amount of money that the Federal Government has religiously allocated to the NDDC, we will like to see the results on the ground; those that are responsible for that have to explain certain issues.
“The projects said to have been done must be verifiable. You just cannot say you spent so much billions and when the place is visited, one cannot see the structures that have been done. The consultants must also prove that they are competent, “Adesina quoted the president.
He also stated that Buhari admitted that developing the Niger Delta area required enormous resources when compared to other parts of the country with firmer lands.
“I am acutely aware, with my experience, that projects in your area are very expensive; that is why if any job is given, we must make sure that the company is competent and has the capacity to do it well with experienced consultants,” he also quoted Buhari.