Chairman of Pan-Niger Delta Forum, Chief Edwin Clark, has warned the Minister of Niger Delta, Godswill Akpabio, over what he described as a personal interest in Niger Delta Development Commission.
Clark reminded the minister that NDDC is an independent interventionist agency, hence he should concentrate on the ministry and leave the commission to work.
He also implored the minister to show more affinity for Niger Delta Ministry as against the personal interest in NDDC.
The PANDEF chairman also called on President Muhammadu Buhari to immediately constitute the board of the NDDC in consonance with the Act establishing the commission.
He spoke on Wednesday while receiving the Interim Administrator of NDDC, Effiong Akwa, and his Interim Management Committee.
According to him, President Buhari should endeavour to set aside a special fund to complete the East West Road started by the administration of former President Olusegun Obasanjo.
Clark said, “There is a law governing NDDC, which we all participate in producing and no one should bypass that law or bridge it. Even Mr President has no power to bypass the law establishing NDDC except he has to go back to the National Assembly for an amendment. So, any attempt to bridge the law will become illegal, null and void.
“There has been many arguments about sole administrator or the legality and illegality, which have been discussed. The NDDC was under the presidency and we know how it was used. But many of us never thought removing NDDC to Niger Delta Ministry was the best thing to do because it would be misused.
“Niger Delta Ministry is our ministry, therefore, NDDC going to the ministry would not have been a bad idea, so we supported it. But what we are opposed to is that NDDC is an independent agency like any other one, like NPA. Other agencies, the ministers did not abandon their ministries to concentrate on these agencies. That is the problem we have.
“For some time, some of us have been advising the minister, don’t abandon your ministry and concentrate on NDDC, it is not fair. The Minister of Transportation does not concentrate on NPA or NIMASA or Railways. The Minister of State (Petroleum) did not concentrate on NNPC.”