TWENTY-five years after its groundbreaking ceremony, the N16 billion headquarters of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), was inaugurated.
President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday inaugurated the building from the Council Chamber of the State House, Abuja.
He commended the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio, for his steadfastness in ending many years of renting by the commission and, “for providing the required leadership that saw to the completion of this edifice.”
He noted that the land was acquired by the Oil Mineral Producing Areas Development Commission (OMPADEC) in 1996, and was abandoned after series of design amendments.
Buhari noted that as part of his administration’s objectives to stem corruption, “reforms were embarked upon, part of which was a holistic reform of the NDDC for greater service delivery for the people of the region.”
According to him, the supervision of the NDDC was assigned to the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs while forensic auditors were appointed to review the operations of the Commission from inception to 2019.
He noted that with the completion of the headquarters, huge yearly rentals would now be saved and he urged the management to deploy the amounts to other areas of needs in the region.
He said: “I am particularly pleased to note the cordial relationship between the NDDC and the National Assembly and hope that this relationship will be strengthened further for the benefit of the people of the Niger Delta region.”
According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Akpabio noted that the NDDC building would also end the activities of corrupt public officials, who had negated the connection of the offices to national grid over many years in order to seek rent on fueling of generators.”
He urged stakeholders in the region to continue to support the Buhari administration in its bid to complete most of the projects abandoned by previous administrations.
Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma, promised that the nine governors under the NDDC would continue to support the bold steps of the President in development.