APC boils: Amaechi runs from wraths of NDDC corruption
Four years after, the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has been thrown in the theatre of corruption. This has become so as the tussle for ministerial appointment for the second term of President Muhammadu Buhari is being taken to the altitude. From the former Minister of information and Culture to the former Minister of Transport are controversies relating to improprieties.
The ill-wind of the past over ‘corruption in the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) appears to be permeating the walls of the Commission’s Headquarters in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, and about to spread into the open society. The, the former Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, begins to cry foul, hacking the eggs before the lay. The race has commenced before the game. An anticipatory corruption allegation translates to plot if smear campaign or blackmail. The same corruption that was the tool of electioneering campaign of the APC presidential team which the former minister was the Director General.
National Daily gathered that while Lai Mohammed, former Minister of Information and Culture, admitted default in his approval of N2.5 billion grant to a private company under the guide of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), and may be appearing in court to explain his action, the Transport Minister who has not been accused by anyone in the open, is already expressing phobia over a seeming record that could be exposed, and perhaps, indict him; then resorted to protest perceived plots to sponsor smear campaign and lies against him. He, however, did not identify who is behind the plots.
Amaechi, in a statement by his media office, complained of the plots to spread fictitious and misleading documents to destroy his image and personality in relations to transactions in NDDC.
National Daily inquiry revealed that NDDC has been an empire of corruption which has been generating protests and petitions from several stakeholders over the years. More so, regional leaders of political parties controlling the federal government often have advantages over NDDC deals. Apparently, transactions in NDDC are usually influenced by the zone’s representatives in the federal government.
National Daily recalls that coalition of advocacy groups in the Niger Delta protested President Buhari’s approval of Nsima, former Senator Ndema Egba, Chairman of NDDC board, and others, for a substantive tenure after completion of the tenure of the previous board which members were fired by the President for being members of, or appointed by the government of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). The protesters rolled out a catalogue of corruption allegations against the NNDC MD before he left for the governorship contest in Akwa Ibom State.
The former Transport Minister was insinuated to have purportedly influenced the appointment of the former Managing Director of NDDC, Nsima Ekere, who failed to resign on picking the APC governorship ticket in Akwa Ibom State for the 2019 elections. While on campaign, President Muhammadu Buhari fired and replaced him, appointing an Acting MD for NDDC.
However, the former Transport Minister in the statement declared: “We know that attempts are being made to peddle all sorts of fictitious, misleading and concocted stories, distorted and manipulated documents that would smudge the image and cast aspersions on the character, integrity and high morals of Amaechi, an astute and accomplished public servant.
“The deceitful plot and plan, and executors of the ominously-funded campaign, is to tarnish the towering status and do as much damage as possible to the character and reputation of Amaechi in the hearts, minds and eyes of the public, using both traditional and new media.
“One aspect of the reprehensible conspiracy is to unscrupulously drag the name of Amaechi and a member of his family into the internal affairs and operations of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) in a manner that is designed and intended to bring disrepute and opprobrium to his character and reputation. There are other aspects and dimensions to the plot to rubbish Amaechi’s image.
“In respect to the NDDC, the defamation campaigners intend to create, make and push to the public space all sorts of speculative and baseless allegations against Amaechi; from the ridiculous, to the puerile and completely bizarre stories, backed with distorted, phony and fake documents. For clarity, we state emphatically, that Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi is not involved in any way, in the management and operations of the NDDC.”
Meanwhile, the said fake documents are being awaited for further investigations.
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