Group urge Tinubu, SGF to direct NDDC, others claiming exemption to hand over immediately

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On Tuesday a transparency group, the League of Nigerian Democrats, LND, has called on the management of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, the North East Development Commission, NEDC, and others to immediately obey President Bola Tinubu’s directive on board dissolution and stop claiming exemption.

The group urged President Tinubu and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, George Akume, CON, to ensure they immediately hand over to the most qualified civil servant in their respective offices, in line with their hierarchy of seniority.

The group in a statement signed by its National Coordinator, Yomi Adelakun, on Tuesday, alleged that the dissolved Chief Executive Officers in agencies and MDAs such as the NDDC, NEDC, are reluctant to obey the presidential directive, accusing them of embarking on over N200 billion looting spree in the last three days.

The statement said “The dissolved board members and chief executive officers were all appointed and screened by the National Assembly as members of the same board and on the same platform reconstituting the governing board in their respective agencies, therefore the President’s directive is clearly referring to the Most Qualified Civil Servant Director who automatically becomes the Chief Executive Officer that will refer matters requiring the attention of their Boards to the President, through the Permanent Secretaries of their respective supervisory ministries and offices.

“The President’s directive is very clear. ‘President Bola Tinubu has approved the immediate dissolution of the Governing Boards of all federal government parastatals, agencies, institutions, and government-owned companies across the country’. The Chief Executive Officers in these agencies and MDAs are all members of the dissolved governing boards.

Adelakun had raised an alarm over the alleged looting spree by officials of the Ministries, Departments and Agencies following last week’s announcement by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu for the freezing of accounts and possible dissolution of the boards, saying the claim by the management of the NDDC that they were exempted is a clear show of disrespect and affront on the President’s directives.

In an earlier statement, Adelakun and the LND had alleged that despite last week’s directive of President Tinubu, there has been a clandestine looting spree and illegal payment of fraudulent contracts by some Ministries, Intervention Agencies and Parastatals and the country may have lost over N200 billion in the last few days.

He claimed that some of the illegal payments and withdrawals were done over the weekend with the connivance of some senior bank officials.

Adelakun said the group in collaboration with some transparency groups in Lagos, Port Harcourt, and two northern states are collating facts and figures for a formal petition to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

He said, “the group received the announcement made by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu with mixed feelings as it prepared these looters to embark on a looting spree despite the Presidential order for the freezing of MDA’s accounts.”

“We are also worried that the looting spree, which is done under the cover of quick payments of outstanding contracts, is a clear case of theft. The NDDC, the North-East Development Commission, the CBN and others have been fingered in these unholy transactions even during the weekends. Some of their Finance department staff were placed in hotels over the weekend to process alleged fraudulent payments.”

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