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NDDC budgets get to Senate amid row over board

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President Muhammadu Buhari has sent the 2019 and 2020 budget proposals of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) to the Senate for consideration and approval.

The president is relying on Section 18(1) of the NDDC (Establishment) Act.Senate is expected to read the president’s letter today and possibly consider the 2019 and 2020 budgets of NDDC.

This is coming amid intrigues over the NDDC board, which seems to have been replaced by the Interim Management Committee (IMC) formed by the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio.

A source within the Senate Committee on the NDDC, who spoke under anonymity, had explained that the commission’s budget ordinarily ought to have been forwarded to the two chambers of the National Assembly at the expiration of the NDDC 2018 budget in July.He noted that the budget of the intervention agency was usually presented to the federal parliament on July of every year. 

The delay might not be unconnected with the confusion caused by the presence of two boards, the IMC and the board that was confirmed by the Senate, but yet to be inaugurated by the president.The Guardian checks indicated that the powerplay between forces disposed to the continued existence of the IMC of the NDDC and those supporting the inauguration of the 15-man board recently confirmed by the Senate as substantive members of the commission was adversely affecting the quest to produce the 2019 budget for the commission.

Despite the insistence of the Senate that the IMC should give way to those appointed and confirmed as members of the NDDC management and board few weeks ago, President Muhammadu Buhari is yet to act on the confirmation.Senate President Ahmad Lawan had stated after the confirmation of the new NDDC board that the IMC had become void with the confirmation of the appointment of the commission’s board.However, Akpabio said the IMC would run the NDDC for six months to oversee the forensic audit of the agency.


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Godswill AkpabioNDDC
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