Tag Archives: Godswill Akpabio

Emeka Kalu calls for probe of Akpabio, Okon Akwa over N22billion NDDC funds, N100m bribe

A chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Engineer Emeka Kalu has called for a thorough investigation of alleged squandering of a whopping N22 billion by Senator Godswill Akpabio, who is the Minister for Niger Delta Affairs, and the Sole Administrator of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, Effiong Okon Akwa.

Kalu also expressed support for the ongoing investigation of allegation of attempting to bribe some officials of the Code of Conduct Bureau, CCB by Akpabio.

Kalu in a statement he signed himself, and made available to Jungle Journalist Media Limited via electronic mail, said that the current corruption charges against Akpabio are one too many, and must not be ignored.

Kalu who sent the mail from the United States of America, warned that the Minister and the Sole Administrator of NDDC, Okon Akwa must not be allowed to get away with the alleged massive fraud which he said has further impoverished people of the Niger Delta.

Hear him: “We are appalled at the high level of corruption cases against Misters Akpabio and Okon Akwa, who heads the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs, and the NDDC. What’s really tragic in the whole matter is that the funds being squandered have been allocated for the upliftment of the people of Niger Delta.

“But these two men sit on our money and dare us. I hereby call for a thorough investigation of these men, whom it has become obvious are far from being honest. Pregnancy cannot be hidden forever, and anyone whose hands are not clean should be tried and jailed for corruption.

“I hereby call on the present administration not to relent in its efforts to curb corrupt practices in this country, and to ensure that justice is served against those who have committed fraud on behalf of the people of the Niger Delta, as well As Nigerians across the globe”, he stated in parts.

Recall that a Federal Commissioner in CCB, Ehiozuwa Johnson Agbonayinma on Monday, 22nd February 2021 told newsmen that his subcommittee is currently investigating the allegation of N100 million bribe against Akpabio.

According to media reports, Akapabio allegedly offered bribe to the CCB officials to give a “soft landing” to Sole Administrator of Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Mr Efiong Okon Akwa over discrepancies in his asset declaration form.

Agbonayinma said the Bureau was looking at the accusation first made against Mr Akpabio by Jackson Ude on Twitter.

“We have been given a mandate by the bureau to investigate the allegation against some officials of CCB that we saw on social media. Let me be specific, one Mr Jackson Ude twitted, and it went viral, that money was given to some officials of CCB by Akpabio. Because of that, a committee to investigate the allegation was set up, with myself as the chairman,” he said.

The embattled Minister, Godswill Akpabio and Effiong Okon Akwa (Sole Administrator of NDDC) were recently accused of having squandered N22billion released to the agency by the Federal Government.

It was also alleged that the Minister is building a multibillion naira mansion in Abuja, and would soon take delivery of two private jets bought on his behalf by a front, one Dubem Obaze.

NDDC: Kalu urges President, NASS to stop Akpabio from appointing sibling as Sole Administrator

The National Coordinator of PDP Coalition and South East Director of Reset Nigeria Group, Chief Dr Emeka Kalu, has called on the President of Federal of Nigeria, President Mohammedu Buhari, the President of the Senate, Senator Ahmed Lawan and Speaker of House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila to as a matter of National interest and for the good of people of Niger Delta whose future is being mortgaged, put a stop to the plan of Senator Godswill Akpabio to turn the agency to a private investment by appointing his brother Sole Administrator for NDDC to enable them divert the 2020 budget of N453.2 billion for personal use.

In a statement personally signed by Kalu and made available to the press, he threatened that if the intended rape on the collective future of NDDC members states, which he belong to, is allowed to proceed with impunity, the concerned citizens of the region will have no option than to embark on heavy regional protests and related civil disobedience to register their displeasure of the attempt to rob their fortune in broad daylight by connivance of few cabals in the region.

He insisted that appointment of Sole Administrator for NDDC is tantamount to creating highway traffic to further loot, rape, plunder and mismanage what is left of the hemohearging ministry under Godswill Akpabio and this illegally will not be allowed to stand.

The government of President Buhari has touted much about fighting corruption, this particular corruption must be fought intoto to avoid further breakdown of peace in the already heated and fragile polity.

The National Assembly should as a matter of urgency swear in a substantive caretaker committee that will man the agency while Akpabio continue with his forensic audit of the Agency.

“We totally reject the attempt by Akpabio and his co travelers to pocket NDDC by appointing his brother as Sole Administrator who will completely hand over the NDDC budget to Akpabio and his collaborators to share while the region remains in abject poverty, thereby betraying the purpose for which NDDC was set up”

“It is utter illegality to imagine the decision by Mr. President to appoint Effiong Okon Akwa as Sole Administrator to ‘oversee the ongoing forensic audit of the Commission to its completion’. This is alien, illegal, void and seriously offends the fine provisions of Sections 2, 3 and 4 of the NDDC (Establishment) Act, 2000.

It is also a typical of a man presiding over his case if Akpabio is allowed to use his brother to oversee audit of money he is accused of embezzling, and by so doing, Mr President will be aiding and abating crime, fraud, embezzlement and encouraging corruption in the high places, unless the presidency gained from the proceeds of the undoing drama in NDDC under Akpabio.

“The fact remains that NDDC is a creation of law and cannot be operated based on the whims and caprices of President Muhammadu Buhari or any other person for that matter.

“We therefore demand that your good offices should not for any reason authorize the spending of the approved N453.2 billion
being 2020 Budget for NDDC or any part thereof by Effiong Okon Akwa for purposes of running the affairs of the Commission as this will also make the Senate President and Speaker of House of Representatives accomplices to the well-orchestrated crime against a region that has already been bedeviled by poverty, underdevelopment and neglect from the leadership of this nation.

“Let me conclude by saying that if this illegality is allowed to sail through, it means that NDDC is just a window dressing where the President appoint a man from the NDDC region as figure head for the purpose of awarding money that will be retrieved for sharing among them and not actually an Agency for development of Niger Delta Region.

“I stand to be proved wrong by the President and NASS.

Akwa Ibom Rerun: PDP Sweeps Assembly, Reps, Senate Poll

Idongesit Ashameri

The people s Democratic Party (PDP) has won the House of Assembly rerun election, Essien Udim Federal House of Representative and the Akwa Ibom Northwest Senatorial rerun elections held on Saturday 25th on the order of the Appeal Court

The returning officer for the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Robert Dode of the University of Uyo who announced the result for the Akwa Ibom Northwest rerun elections declared that Mr. Christopher Ekpeyong of the Peoples Democratic Party won the rerun elections.

He said that Mr. Ekpeyong polled 134, 717 votes while Sen. Godswill Akpabio of All Progressives Congress (APC), who had earlier announced his withdrawal scored 83, 820 votes in the rerun elections.

Also, the returning officer of INEC for the House of representatives, Prof. Idara Akpabio of the University of Uyo has declared Mr. Nsikak Ekong of the PDP as winner having polled 45, 366 votes while Mr. Emmanuel Akpan of the APC scored 22, 757.

In the House of Assembly supplementary elections, the returning officer, Prof. Victor Ebong of the University of Uyo declared Esse Umoh of PDP winner having polled 18, 999 votes to defeat Mr. Nse Ntuen of the APC who scored 7,108.

It could be recalled that the Appeal court in siting in Calabar had urged INEC to conduct rerun elections into Akwa Ibom Northwest Senatorial District, Essien Udim Federal Constituency and supplementary elections into Essien Udim State Constituency.

It could also be recalled that the Chairman of APC, Mr. Ini Okopido on Jan 24th announced the withdrawal of the party from the rerun elections.

Okopido blamed the party’s withdrawal from the rerun on claims that Mr. Mike Igini Resident Electoral Commissioner in Akwa Ibom has shown unprecedented bias against APC and may not give room for fair play.

Senatorial Rerun: Akpabio can’t be substituted, says INEC

Omeiza Ajayi – Abuja

Indications have emerged that the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, may have rejected the new candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress APC for Saturday’s rerun elections in Akwa Ibom Northwest Senatorial District.

Following the appointment of its candidate, Sen. Godswill Akpabio as Minister for Niger Delta Affairs, APC had last month forwarded a replacement to INEC for the rerun election slated for this Saturday.

However, speaking Tuesday in Abuja during the swearing-in of two new Resident Electoral Commissioners RECs, Dr Alalibo Sinikiem Johnson from Bayelsa State and Umar Mukhtar Gajiram from Borno State, Chairman of the Commission, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu said since the rerun elections are court-ordered exercises, political parties are barred by law from substituting their candidates.

“On Saturday this week, elections will hold in 28 constituencies spread across 11 States of the Federation. Six of these elections involve entire constituencies while 22 elections will be held only in some polling units.

“In all the constituencies, the elections will be contested by the same political parties and candidates that participated in the 2019 general election except where the elections were nullified on grounds of candidate disqualification.

“The two affected constituencies are Gamawa Federal Constituency in Bauchi State and Agwara State Constituency in Niger State where elections will be held without the candidates and parties that were declared winners in the general election.

“There will be no substitution of candidates as these are not bye-elections but court-ordered re-run elections and the period for nomination of candidates had elapsed since the end of 2018 in preparation for the 2019 general election”, Yakubu said.

INEC also announced its readiness for the 28 rerun elections which would take place across 11 states of the Federation.

“I wish to assure Nigerians that the Commission is ready for the re-run elections. All sensitive and non-sensitive materials have been deployed to the States, stakeholders’ meetings have been held, security arrangements are being finalised while training and posting of ad hoc staff, as well as the configuration of Smart Card Readers, are ongoing.

Where the elections involve entire constituencies, National as well as some Resident Electoral Commissioners will be deployed”, the INEC boss stated.

He said the Commission will work with security agencies to ensure adequate protection of election officials, accredited observers, the media and the processes generally against acts inimical to the conduct of peaceful and credible elections.

“We have received assurances from the security agencies of adequate protection of the processes in line with the rules of engagement for election duty”.

On the new RECs, Yakubu disclosed that while Dr Johnson is from Bayelsa State and replaces the former REC of Cross River State, Mr Gajiram replaces the former REC of Taraba State who died a few months ago.

“Dr Johnson holds a BSc. degree in Political Science and a Master’s and Doctorate degrees in Peace and Conflict Studies. Until this appointment, he was a Lecturer at the Niger Delta University in Bayelsa State. Mr Gajiram holds a Bachelor’s degree in English Language and a Master’s degree in Public Administration.

“Let me, therefore, congratulate Dr Johnson and Mr Gajiram on their appointment. As I told your colleagues on the occasion of their swearing-in as RECs, you will also be responsible for the implementation of the Commission’s policies.

“In doing so, you will exercise supervisory control over personnel, resources as well the legal and administrative processes in the State to which you are deployed.

“You will also interact with various categories of stakeholders. In doing so, you must maintain the required openness and consultation. At the same time, you must be very firm in the discharge of your responsibilities.

“As RECs, you can be deployed to any part of the country at any time the exigencies of service require but you will never serve in your States of origin throughout your tenure.

“In line with this policy, Dr Johnson is hereby deployed to Cross River State while Mr Gajiram is deployed to Taraba State”, he declared.

Vanguard News Nigeria.

AKPABIO : Niger Delta Group cry out, says it’s been 100 days of confusion

The Niger Delta People’s Liberation Movement, has said the Niger Delta region has seen so much of confusion since the assumption in office of the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio.

Reacting to a call by six civil society organisations for the withdrawal of the presidential nominees into the board of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, the group said it was clear that the Minister has other motives other than forensic audit in mind for wanting the Interim Management Committee, IMC, to “assume much more permanent status than the legally constituted board.”

It cited the case of the IMC’s plan to carry out projects as a confirmation of the hidden motive of the Minister.

In a statement signed by Oghenekaro Joseph and Belema Diri, the group said the Minister’s hidden motives are clearly seen by discerning Niger Deltans.

“We are joining the Hon. Minister of Niger Delta Affairs and his media team to celebrate 100 days of confusion in the region. The region has seen more confusion in the 100 days than in all the years the ministry and the NDDC have been in existence,” the statement said.

The statement further said: “The Minister has hidden motives behind the IMC. If it was just for forensic audit, the IMC would not be having an Executive Director, Project who is even a Medical Doctor with the intent to award contracts or an Executive Director, Finance and Administration with plans to carry out financial transactions. It could just have been a committee of technocrats, not politicians, with no office, but with unfettered access to the commission. The mere fact that Minister Akpabio is carrying out as if he is the Managing Director of NDDC leaves much to be desired.

He was appointed Minister of the Niger Delta and not that of NDDC. He should leave NDDC for the constituted board to run it.”

The group said there has always been audits in the country, noting that the minister is making too much noise about an exercise that should ordinarily be a routine.

“If he doesn’t know, he should ask the Auditor General of the federation. Does a Minister or Permanent Secretary leave office for the auditors to be seen as fair. Do they appoint IMC for Ministries, Departments and Agencies just because they are to be audited? How will the new board interfere in the work of the forensic auditors and how will the IMC help the auditors?”

The group called on President Muhammadu Buhari to save the region more embarrassment by reposting the Minister, saying the Minister is not the best person to carry out any audit related duties.

“He was one of the Governors of the region in the 16 years of the PDP sleaze and has his hands filled from the public till. He cannot say he had no hand in the NDDC. Our investigation shows that apart from nominating people to serve on the board of the commission at various times, including nominating his brother, one Jeremiah Akpabio to serve as Special Assistant to a Managing Director, the minister has been beneficiary of several NDDC contracts through fronts and cannot go to the audit with the stained hands.”

The group said the idea behind the audit is perfect and commended President Buhari for it, but said “Senator Akpabio, however, is not the right man to supervise the audit. For someone who left several uncompleted projects, most of which he had collected all the monies meant for the projects to sound like a saint now is a ploy to use the NDDC to continue the life of sleaze which he is known for.”

The group also queried the credentials of the members of the IMC, noting that the Minister has clearly downgraded standards in the commission by appointing a political medical doctor as EDP.

NDDC leadership: Akpabio lied – Niger Delta Stakeholders

The minister of Niger Delta Affairs Godswill Akpabio has been accused of “telling serial lies in his grand design to appropriate and control the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).” This is the position of the Niger Delta Stakeholders, led by Chief Demiebi Jackson.

A statement credited to the minister, portions of which were reported in The Nation Newspaper of Tuesday, December 10, 2019 and Niger Delta Today, an online newspaper, where he said it was Bayelsa State’s turn to produce the MD of NDDC has been criticised by the Niger Delta Stakeholders who say “the minister is sowing seeds of discord to advance his agenda following opposition to the illegal interim management committee he set up for the commission.”

Akpabio stated in the newspaper reports as follows: “We have not had two full years of Managing Director for Bayelsa. We have had Engr. Godwin Omene staying as MD of NDDC for almost four full years. We have had Hon Emmanuel Aguariavwodo from Delta serving as MD for almost three years. So, it is not the turn of Delta.”

But fact-check shows that Akpabio lied. Public records from the NDDC show that after Delta State produced the MD for a total of five years, Bayelsa State held the MD position thereafter. From the records, Engr Godwin Omene was MD at inception from 2001 to 2003 when he resigned. Then, Timi Alaibe from Bayelsa State who was the ED Finance and Admin, stepped in as Acting MD until Emmanuel Aguariavwodo was appointed to complete Delta State’s term. Aguariavwodo was MD from 2003-2006. Timi Alaibe again stepped in as Acting MD. Alaibe was subsequently confirmed as MD in 2006 and held the position until 2009, representing Bayelsa State. Thereafter, Rivers State produced the MD with Chibuzor Ugoha from 2009 to 2011 and Chris Oboh from 2011 to 2013. Akwa Ibom was next with Dan Abia from 2013 to 2015 and Nsima Ekere from 2016 to 2018. It is now the turn of Delta State, following the rotational policy for the MD position among the four major oil producing states. According to Chief Demiebi “Where then is the truth in Akpabio’s claim that Bayelsa State has not had ‘two full years as MD”?

“Not only is the minister’s claim that Bayelsa State has not held the position for long untrue, the claim that Omene spent four years is also untrue, because Omene spent just two years, from 2001 to 2003. Agwariavwodo spent three years, from 2003 to 2006, bringing the total for Delta State to about five years.

The group also took up the statement credited to the minister that Delta state should take the chairmanship position rather than the MD position, saying that “since Delta State is entitled to both, it should be given both or be allowed to take the one of its choice. It is the prerogative of Delta State to decide. The minister should not try to make an issue out of this as a means to executing his personal agenda. Otherwise, how is it an issue that a state which is due to have both positions of Chairman and MD is being vilified for opting for the MD position. Indeed, Akpabio’s statement on the choice made by Delta State when he said that Delta State opted for the ‘bigger position’ contradicts his own statement that Delta State should not produce the MD based on tenure. It has exposed the lies in his many excuses since the new NDDC board was duly confirmed by the Senate and confirms his inordinate interest in the NDDC, contrary to the claims he made in the newspapers.”

The MD position has been rotated round all the four major oil producing states and it is now Delta State’s turn to produce the MD. Nothing should be done to shortchange Delta State”.

Reps Urge Minister To Dissolve Three-Man NDDC Interim Board 

The House of Representatives has called on the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio to dissolve the three-man interim board of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).

Ossai Nicholas Ossai (PDP, Delta) presented a Motion on Matters of Public Importance at the plenary on Wednesday titled: “Urgent need to stop the illegality in Niger Delta Development Commission”.

Ossai noted that the constitution of the interim leadership by the minister contravenes the law establishing the Commission.

According to him, section 8 of NDDC Act provides that its management and administration shall be the responsibility of its Governing Board.

He explained that “the governing board of the Commission included the Chairman, the Managing Director and the other members with the powers to manage and supervise the affairs of the Commission making rules and regulations for effective functioning of the Commission.”

He stressed that “concerned that on the 29th of October after the Senate Committee on the Niger Delta had screened the President’s nominees and in the same day the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs inaugurated an interim committee to midwife the Commission’s forensic audit.”

Representative Ossai therefore advised the Senate to discontinue attending to the budget process of the Commission and urged the House of Representatives Committee to do the same.