Some stakeholders from the Oil Producing communities in Ondo state have alleged unfair distribution of posts in the Niger Delta Development Commission, (NDDC) for the past 17 years.
The Centre for Justice and Fairness in Niger Delta (CFJFIND) stated this in a letter addressed to President Muhammadu Buhari, complaining over the monopoly of the three top management positions within the commission and called on the Federal Government to intervene and correct the inequality in the NDDC.
Speaking on behalf of the group, the Executive Director of CFJFIND, Comrade Alex Kalejaye, listed the three positions to include Managing Director, Executive Managing Director Finance and Adminstration and Executive Director Projects, saying the development has been causing sharp division between member states from the old producing area.
According to him, four out of the nine states have been rotating the three positions among themselves while the five states had been sidelined in the last 17 years and listed the four state at the helms of affairs to include: Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Delta and Rivers States, saying Ondo, Edo, Imo, Abia and Cross River State had been shut out.
Kalejaye explained that “Akwa Ibom has held the positions of Managing Director and Executive Director Projects for two terms while Bayelsa has held the positions of Managing Director and Executive Finance and Adminstration.
“Delta state has held the position of Managing Director, Executive Director Finance and Adminstration and Executive Director Projects and Rivers has also held all the three positions.”
He lamented that it is sad that Ondo, Edo, Imo, Abia and Cross River have not tasted any of the positions since the creation of the board in the last 17 years.
He explained that this negates the Act which established the commission which stated that the Managing Director and the two Executive Directors should be rotated among members states.
Quoting the section 12 (1) of the NDDC Act, he said “There shall be for the commission, a managing Director and two Executive Directors who shall be indigenes of the Oil Producing Areas, starting with the members state commission with the highest production quantum of oil, and shall rotate amongst member states in order of production.”
Kalejaye noted that “there is equality of states as regards the sharing of these three top management members of NDDC. As at now, it is the turn of Ondo state to produce the next Managing Director of the NDDC.
“This is so because Ondo state is the fifth highest oil-producing state in the NDDC and a fortiori in Nigeria.
“Since all the states that have higher production of oil than Ondo state have produced the Managing Director at one time or the other, it follows that by provision of section 12(1) supra, Ondo state must of necessity produce the managing Director for the next board to be constituted. This is the way it should go if inequality in the NDDC is to be corrected.
He however called the Federal government attention to the marginalisation of the five states, urging the Federal government not “to give in to this surreptitious manipulation and modification of the NDDC Act.
In a related development, stakeholders from the coastal area also called on the state governor, Mr Rotimi Akeredolu, to also intervene before the inequality in the commission escalate into crisis among the states.
In the letter addressed to the governor assigned by Ayenuberu Eganosi, said the tenure of the Ndoma Egba led should end in December 2017, saying “if government is desirous that the current board should continue in office after the expiration of their tenure in December 2017, government can only do this by representing their names to the National Assembly for confirmation and not through the back door extension.
“To extend it elongate the tenure of the current Executives of the board would be to deprive Delta state of its slot of producing the Chairman and dislodge Ondo state of its rightful position to produce the next Managing Director.” NIGERIAN TRIBUNE