According to Thisday Newspaper, the minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpobio, has listed the lawmakers who got major contracts from the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) over the last few years.
The paper reported that the names of the lawmakers were attached to the letter the minister sent to the speaker of the house of representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila.
Akpabio’s letter was in response to a threat by the speaker to bring down the wrath of the house on the former Akwa Ibom governor if he failed to substantiate his claim that “60% of the contracts awarded in the NDDC went to the members of the national assembly.”
Akpabio had while appearing before a house panel probing the alleged mismanagement of N81.5 billion by the interim management committee (IMC) of the commission, revealed that federal lawmakers were the biggest beneficiaries of the contracts awarded by the commission.
In responding to the Gbajabiamila’s challenge, Akpabio in his letter listed Peter Nwaoboshi, senate committee chairman on NDDC; Matthew Urhoghide, senate committee chairman on public accounts, and James Manager, senator representing Delta South, as beneficiaries.
Also listed as beneficiaries were Sam Anyanwu, a former senator representing Imo east, and Nicholas Mutu, a lawmaker from Delta who chaired the house NDDC committee in the last assembly and currently, chairman,house committee on gas resources.
Nwaoboshi’s name was tied to 53 projects, Mutu was said to have received 74 contracts, Urhoghide, Manager and Anyanwu allegedly got 31 contracts in total.
The revelations emerging from the ongoing probe in the national assembly have exposed the level of corruption within the 20 year old NDDC, established by the Olusegun Obasanjo regime to fast track development in the Niger Delta region, the zone that is responsible for more than 75% of Nigeria’s foreign exchange revenue.