President Muhammadu Buhari has said that the Federal Government is repositioning the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) and the Amnesty Programme to ensure they deliver on their mandates of developing the Niger Delta.
Buhari stated this while declaring open the fourth Meeting of the National Council on Niger Delta at the Hotel Presidential, Port Harcourt.
The President who was represented by the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, noted that the Niger Delta region had suffered so much deprivation thus needed a new deal.
“We are committed to changing the fortunes of the region to give the people a new lease of life,” stating that “the government was addressing the challenges of under-development and insecurity in the region,” he was quoted as saying by a statement issued on Friday by NDDC’s spokesman.
According to the President, the on-going forensic audit of the NDDC was expected to reposition the commission and galvanize it towards optimal development and provide the needed infrastructure for socio-economic growth that the region so much requires.
“Due to the efforts and commitment of the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, the new headquarters building of the NDDC, which had been on-going in the last 24 years, has been completed and is awaiting commissioning by my administration.”
On the East-West Road, Buhari said: “The completion of the East-West Road, which is a priority to this government, has been handed over to the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs and I assure you that it will be delivered by the end of 2021 or the early part of 2022.”
The Niger Delta Minister, Godswill Akpabio called for harmony between the NDDC and the state governments in the region in order to realize the full benefit of the interventionist agency to the people.
According to him, the disharmony between these critical stakeholders was fueled by several factors, including political, which badly impacts development of the region. ‘Poverty and hunger have no political party,’ Akpabio quipped.