By Miriam Humbe
Minister of the Ministry of Niger Affairs, Senator Godswill Obot Akpabio has charged the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), to explore collaborative partnership with other agencies as permitted by law as alternative sources of funding.
Senator Akpabio, gave the charge when he paid a working visit to the Headquarters of NDDC in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
The Minister urged the Commission to imbibe the culture of adherence to due process, international best practices and commitment to the welfare of the real people of the Niger Delta region.
He also taskd the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) to drastically curtail its procurement activities by reducing the number of new projects and programmes, because, according to him “the ongoing 12 thousand projects by the Commission is facing funding challenges”.
He said President Muhammadu Buhari, must commission legacy projects starting from next year and promised to put a mechanism in place to determine the actual liabilities of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC and the total numbers of ongoing projects and programmes, and charged the Commission to ensure they move to their headquarters next year.
Senator Akpabio called on the Commission to have a well-structured fund development regime and also charged them to motivate the staff so as to put in their best in projects monitoring and evaluation.
Earlier, the Acting Managing Director of Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) Dr. Mrs. Enyia Akwagaga, disclosed that the Commission is driving a partnership to grow agribusiness in the focal states of the Commission that will target about 10 local government areas in each state with International Fund for Agricultural Development, (IFAD).
She also said that the programme Livelihood Improvement Family Enterprise Project in the Niger Delta, LIFE-ND is bringing about $129.2 Million to the table and that the huge amount will be invested in the collaboration which stands to boost food production and empower the vulnerable rural population to drive their own economy.