Ex-agitators in the Niger Delta have given the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) a five-day deadline.
The ultimatum could be linked to the Samuel Ogbuku-led management’s defiance of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s mandate that all boards of federal parastatals and agencies be abolished.
Under the auspices of the Coalition of Ex-agitators of Niger Delta (CEND), the ex-agitators particularly stated that if Ogbuku and his team did not leave office when the ultimatum expired, they would occupy the commission and halt its operations.
In a statement signed by its Chairman, Gen Daboikiabo Alalibo, CEND stated that it was incomprehensible and unimaginable that the team could be functioning against the president’s directive, and that Ogbuku and his colleagues were occupying their offices illegally.
“Our President issued an express order dissolving all federal parastatals and agencies.” The NDDC was affected because it was not one of the constitutionally exempted entities from the order.
“However, we understand that some people close to the president orchestrated the conspiracy that allowed Ogbuku and others to remain on the NDDC’s management team.” It is against the law. They must either resign or face their anger.
After reviewing the scenario and investigating the development, Alalibo stated that allowing a portion of a dissolved board to continue in office was a misnomer and illegal.
“This is not the era of former President Muhammadu Buhari, when presidential directives were treated with kid gloves and flouted with flagrant impunity.”
“Our president’s order must be followed because there is no sacred cow and no preferential treatment.” “NDDC should not always be a victim of lawlessness, as it has been throughout Buhari’s administration,” Alalibo remarked.
Alalibo demanded that the Ogbuku team quickly hand over control of the commission to the most senior director in the NDDC, claiming that the existing situation was jeopardizing the interests of all stakeholders and member nations.
He asked the federal government to safeguard the current peace in the Niger Delta by avoiding moves that could send the wrong signals in the region.
“The current NDDC management team is illegal,” he stated. All parastatals and commissions, including the current NDDC board, have been dissolved by the President. However, some persons collaborated to allow Ogbuku to oversee the NDDC’s management team, and he is still referred to as the MD.
“We don’t want the region to enter another era of crisis, which is why ex-agitators are asking the federal government to appoint the most senior director to run the NDDC until a new board is formed.”
“We are urging President Tinubu to act immediately.” We have given the Ogbuku-led team five days to leave the NDDC in order to keep the calm in the region. We have stated that if the necessary steps are not taken within five days, we will shut down and barricade the NDDC. It will be pressure against pressure, and we will hold the government accountable for whatever happens.
“The president should avoid anything that will put pressure on the Niger Delta, especially now that the fuel subsidy has been removed.” Everyone is outraged now, and if Mr. President fails to keep the NDDC board abolished, he should accept responsibility for whatever happens.
“He was an interim administrator for nearly a year, and during that time, they were using the place as a cash cow, as former Rivers state Governor Wike recently stated,” Alalibo maintained.