NDDC Saga: Fresh Allegations Emerge, Crisis Depeens As Top Official Declares Readiness To Expose ‘Can Of Worms’
Fresh revelations are trickling in as allegations and counter allegations of corruption deepens in the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC.
In a damning report, Head of Research, Acts of Positive Transformation Initiatives, Kolawole Johnson has said he is ready to open the can of worms in the NDDC so that sanity can be restored to the commission.
Speaking in an authoritative manner, Johnson accused the Acting Director of Projects in the NDDC Cairo Ojougboh of paying money due for Post Graduate, PG, students on scholarship into a certain account of his domiciled with the United Bank of Africa, UBA.
“I can read to you other staff who got payment and money from contractors one by one and the dates they got them.
“I pray that the house will have the guts to give us live hearing, Nigerians will hear alot, I want to open all the can of worms, now I am ready”, he said.
In a swift reaction Ojougboh said he was ready to explain himself if anyone approached him appropriately adding that the manner Johnson was handling issues was not the best way to handle such situation.
He said, “If I want to steal money from government I will not write my name and account number, the money he is talking about is for a trip to see our students who are graduating in September.
We have over a thousand students oversees when theye are graduating from time to time as an executive, you have to visit and discuss with the university and ensure that students who are there money paid on their behalf is not wasted.
“That is what these trips are meant for and not otherwise as insinuated”, he added.
Explaining further Ojougboh insisted that he is a soldier of truth and is open for the criticism and persons who seek clarification can approach him anytime and he will oblige them.
“I am a medical doctor, I graduated 35 years ago what am I blocking students funds for, if you want the records come sit down we will show you instead of all these rants here.
“We have nothing to hide, if you have a problem write to us at NDDC we will invite you. I am a soldier of truth and a civilised man, i respect people I will not in anyway do anything to disrespect you if you ask for explanation”.
Last week former Acting MD of NDDC Joy Nunieh had in an interaction with journalists accused the Minister of Niger Delta Godswill Akpabio of pressuring her to take an oath of secrecy which she refused and a number of other damaging revelations.
Nunieh said, “Nobody makes any payment in NDDC without Godswill Akpabio’s approval. When we first came, on the day of the inauguration, he said to me in the car, ‘Madam MD, if you don’t do what I say, the same pen with which I used to sign your paper is the same pen I’ll use to remove you.
He said the first thing I should do when I get to Port Harcourt is to change the dollars in the NDDC account. I was scared to do that and he claimed that I have a poverty mentality that I’m afraid of money. All of you knew that he accused me of refusing to spend money. It is strange today, it’s about money.
“After that, he came to Port Harcourt two days after the inauguration and told me that the first thing I should do was to change the dollars.”
“He told me to take an oath. Though he denied that, he told me, three times until we had a reconciliation at the Villa in the office of Mr. Abba who is the S.A. to the President on domestics amongst other allegations.
Akpabio while reacting to the accusations described them as false insisting that there were discrepancies in all the documents submitted which on its own indicted Nunieh adding that the National Youth Service Corps, NYSC, had in a letter claimed they had no records of her in Kwara State or anywhere else.
According to him she was removed after this findings, if something comes up that you were not aware of like the person occupying a position does not have an NYSC certificate what do you do? He queried.
Akpabio said, “Let me state clearly that this is not a personal thing, she was not relieved of the appointment because of corruption but insubordination. My Ministry that should supervise her wrote seven letters to her and she never responded to any.
“Also a petition had come from an anti-corruption agency sent to me by the late Chief of Staff Abba Kyari insisting that she did not have the required qualification to work as an acting Managing Director of a commission.