Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, has given an assurance that the ongoing forensic audit of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) will be completed by next month.
He also disclosed that the much-awaited list of the Chairman and other members of the NDDC board will soon be forwarded to the National Assembly for necessary confirmation.
Akpabio, who spoke with reporters after a closed-door meeting with the Chief of Staff to the President, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari at the State House, Abuja, said the forensic audit report on the NDDC will be ready for presentation to President Muhammadu Buhari by July.
The minister, who expressed satisfaction with the progress made so far on the forensic audit, stressed that the exercise was aimed at not just to clean up the mess in the NNDC, but to reposition the agency and ensure optimal performance as against the practice in the past where it only served as “just an agency for the purposes of election only.”
His words: “The field forensic audit is on course and is progressing very well. I am happy with the progress so far and I am very certain that come the end of July, is just a month and few weeks away, the final result will be given to Mr. President for final implementation”.
The former one-time Senator disclosed that the process towards the composition of the new NDDC board was also being fast-tracked so as to come up with a final list to be transmitted to the National Assembly for further action.
“In terms of the composition of the board of the NDDC, of course we have fast-tracked the process; the National Assembly will soon get the list. But that is not as important as the forensic audit, which we have already given a deadline. Our belief is that the new board will use those recommendations to turn around the agency,” he said.
Akpabio, however, dismissed insinuations that he is under pressure by militants in the region to reconstitute the board, describing the development as “politics.”
“No! Everything is politics whether it’s development or composition. Nobody has put me under pressure to reconstitute the board. I can sponsor any group of people to make a statement but the major thing is peace of the region”.