NDDC: why Akpabio, Pondei can’t superintend forensic audit- Group

Okodili Ndidi, Abuja

A nonpartisan group advocating development in the Niger Delta region, the Global Forum for Accountability and Transparency, Nigeria, has restated its call for the disqualification of the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio from supervising the forensic audit of the Commission.

It said that the findings of the National Assembly Probe Committee which unearthed humongous fraud perpetrated in the NDDC under the Minister’s watch, has justified its earlier position that Akpabio and the Acting Managing Director of the Commission, Kemeberadikumo Pondei can’t midwife a transparent forensic audit.

Founder and Lead Executive of the group, Joseph Ambakederimo, while briefing journalists in Abuja, insisted that as one of the indicted persons, Akpabio should be asked to resign to pave way for proper investigations into the established mismanagement of the NDDC.

According to him, the allegation of corruption and project racketeering leveled against the Minister, had justified the position of the group that Akpabio cannot supervise genuine audit of the Commission.

He added further that, “we are also requesting that Mr. Godswil Akpabio and his IMC team should recuse themselves from suprintending over the forensic audit and resign their appointment for the fact that they have been found culpable by every measurable indicator and therefore lack the moral justification to continue to be be in charge of a serious exercise.

“Having requested for the Chairmen of the committees to step aside which the House Committee Chairman obliged they too should have to do the honourable thing to step aside because their legs and hands have been caught in the till.

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“We reiterate our call for the discontinuation of the audit as the report of the exercise is already predetermined. This can be corroborated listining to the Minister on the floor of the public hearing that the auditors leaked a portion of the report indicting members of the NASS, therefore this action of the Minister and the auditors have confirmed our fears, which is that the report of the audit is predetermined. We urge the President to empanel a Justice Ayo Salami kind of investigative team, currently probing the suspended EFCC Chairman, Ibrahim Magu, to do justice to the NDDC imbroglio”.

Meanwhile the group has raised the alarm over alleged plot to compromise members of the NASS Probe Committee.

The group in a separate statement, alleged that the Pondei-led Committee is mopping up huge funds to influence the final report of the Probe Committee.

According to the statement, “following the outrage that greeted the level of financial mismanagement unearthed by the NASS probe Committee , the IMC is hell bent on ensuring that the Committee’s findings did not see the light of the day”.

It also alleged that NDDC Interim Committee is hurriedly paying for spurious jobs awarded to the members and their croonies.



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