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HomeTop NewsOil firms owing NDDC $4 bln as Akpabio declares commission failed agency

Oil firms owing NDDC $4 bln as Akpabio declares commission failed agency

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International oil companies (IOCs) operating in the country are owing the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) over $4 billion, according to the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio.

Under the enabling of the regional development agency, the IOCs are required to provide three percent of their annual budgets to the commission as their statutory contribution to its funding.

The minister said since the establishment of the NDDC, none of the IOCs has paid so far.

He described the NDDC as a failed agency, saying it could not justify the billions it received over the years.

“NDDC is being owed $4 billion by the OICs unremitted funds. The Federal Government is also owing a little bit of its part that it should do to the NDDC.

“I believe that with the audit of the commission, we will begin to offset those things working closely with the Ministry of Finance.

“There are plans to pay those debts. I want to see a balance sheet of the NDDC that is bankable.

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“The IOCs are expected to pay to the NDDC three per cent of their annual budgets. All of them have failed to do so at different times.”

On the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) 2021, Apkabio said the people of the region are happy that President Muhammadu Buhari has shown commitment to their cause through the Act, adding that the protests are normal.

Akpabio put the debt profile of NDDC established in June 2000 to over N3 trillion, regretting that no significant project executed by the Commission matched that figure.

He explained that it was in a bid to unearth where the huge sums of money given to the NDDC have been utilised that led to the commissioning of the forensic audit.

“I haven’t seen any major thing that has touched the lives of the people in the region done by the NDDC. We are still searching for the project they have done. The money given to the NDDC has not been utilised well.

“The major agent of intervention, the NDDC failed. That has been the problem.

“We (NDDC) have a commitment in the excess of N3 trillion. The forensic audit will clarify these things”, he said.

He confirmed that the forensic audit report of the NDDC has been completed and would soon be submitted to President Buhari.

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