The Ijaw Youths Council (IYC) worldwide has queried the rationale behind the non-inauguration of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) board of directors, disclosing that the extension of Effiong Akwa’s tenure as the sole administrator of NDDC expired on December 31, 2021. While maintaining that the presidency was doing nothing to inaugurate the board, the president of the body, Peter Timothy Igbifa, queried the transport minister and former Rivers State Governor Rotimi Amaechi’s silence on the agitation of stakeholders for a substantive board of the Niger Delta development commission (NDDC).
In a statement yesterday, Igbifa wrote: “The silence of leaders like the transport minister, Rotimi Amaechi on the illegality at the NDDC is no longer golden. “Why has Amaechi, who is known for his boldness and for withstanding all opposition to support president Muhammadu Buhari, suddenly lost his voice concerning the NDDC? Amaechi and other leaders must explain to us the reason for their silence. “We condemn the silence of Mr. President on this board matter. President Muhammadu Buhari portrayed himself as an insensitive leader when he failed to speak on the matter during his recent speech to inaugurate the hostel project built by NDDC at the University of Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.
“It is obvious that persons surrounding the president and who wrote that speech for him are misrepresenting him because the real Buhari that we know would have inaugurated the NDDC Board at least as a new year gift to the Niger Delta people who gave him the goodwill of regional peace like no other.” The IYC boss said the Council would continue to demand transparency and accountability in NDDC and called on the president to make the forensic audit report of the commission public. He, however, asked Ijaw politicians and persons sympathetic to the course of the Ijaw Nation to begin consultations and grassroot mobilisation to actualise the vision.
“Politics has gone beyond ethnic divide. Do your home work and avoid the pull-himdown syndrome. Ijaws are very desirous to produce the next governors of Rivers and Delta states for which Delta Ijaws are consulting already hence, we call on Rivers Ijaws to begin their consultation,” he said. Among other things, he said the IYC would take agitations for wetland conservation of the Niger Delta to the United Nations; pursue youth empowerment with emphasis on job creation; take deliberate actions against oil firms for destroying the environment and monitor the activities of all interventionist agencies.