BusinessDay

FG blames NDDC over poor performance on IOC’s $4b indebtedness

....Completes clean up of 21 Ogoni sites

The federal government on Thursday said International Oil Companies (IOCs) operating in Nigeria are collectively owing the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), over $4b, blaming the commission for the accumulation of the debt.

Godswill Akpabio, Minister of the Niger Delta Affairs dropped the hint on Thursday at the briefing by the Presidential Media Team in Abuja.

The indebtedness, BusinessDay gathered spanned from several years of unpaid commitments from the 3percent, each of the IOCs is mandated to remit to the interventionist agency from their annual budget.

Akpabio assured that the funds were part of monies NDDC was expected to deploy in executing development projects in the oil-producing region in Nigeria and vowed that government will do whatever it takes to recover the funds from the oil companies.

Read Also: FG says oil companies owe NDDC $4bn

Akpabio who was speaking on the performance of the NDDC as part of the activities of his Ministry, however, berated the agency for “ acting like Father Christmas and Stock Exchange” over the years.

The Minister also revealed that the NDDC was owing contractors about N3 trillion through frivolous contract awards, many of which have remained unverified.

“We are investigating the NDDC through forensic auditing. Since my assumption of office, l have checked and have not seen even a 5km of road done by the NDDC. We are still searching to understand where the funds they spent went into and we are going to find them”

Also speaking on the Ogoni clean-up, he disclosed that 21 sites have been completed while new contracts will soon be awarded for 36 new sites.

“ NDDC is being owed over $4b by the IOCs and the federal government is making every effort to collect the money. They were expected to pay 3percent of their annual budget to the NDDC, all of them are owing to the NDDC.”

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