A civil society group, Centre for Good Governance, has called for the immediate sack of Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio, and Acting Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission, Prof Daniel Pondei, over massive fraud and financial misappropriation in the agency.
The group expressed regrets that President Muhammadu Buhari was yet to relieve both men of their duties despite all the revelations of the sleaze going on in the organisation that had come to light.
In a statement, Head of Research and Documentation of CGG, Mr Douglas Azubuike, disclosed that a member of Aso Rock cabal had been shielding Akpabio from being sacked by the President.
He said, “We equally read with dismay a press statement by the President’s spokesperson, Mallam Garba Shehu, that President Muhammadu Buhari should not be stampeded into taking decisions over the high level of corruption in the Niger Delta Development Commission and that Nigerians should allow the processes to run their full courses.
“We found the statement distasteful, embarrassing and astonishingly disturbing. What more do we need to unravel.
“Nigerians have watched on television the monumental shame, disparagement and opprobrium the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs and the Interim Management Committee of the NDDC had brought upon the nation and the nauseating drama that characterised the probe.
“Just last week, we read a report in one of the national newspapers that Nigerian scholars abroad now resort to menial jobs to survive. Monies meant for their school fees and upkeep had been fraudulently diverted to private pockets of NDDC staff. Indeed President Muhammadu Buhari admitted in an interview he granted on Salah day of a breach of trust.
“Mr President, the NDDC scandals have revealed the wickedness of the Nigerian elites and sheer criminality.
“We have seen the plight and deprivation of the Niger Delta people, it is difficult to believe that this is what their elites are doing with the little opportunity given to them.
“Mr President, the buck stops with you. Nigerians overwhelmingly voted for you and not members of the cabal.
“The right thing must be done to ameliorate the sufferings of the people of the region.”