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FENRAD Writes Buhari, Demands Publication Of NDDC Forensic Audit Report

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A pro-democracy, human and environmental rights civil society group, Foundation for Environmental Rights, Advocacy and Development, FENRAD has written an open letter to President Muhammadu Buhari, requesting the publication of the forensic audit report on Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC recently released by the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs and presented to the Attorney General of the federation by Senator Godswill Akpabio, Niger Delta Affairs minister.

In the letter dated 22/9/2021 and signed by Comrade Nelson Nnanna Nwafor, FENRAD Executive Director and Barr. Akande Femisi, Head Corporate Accountability, and Human Rights Enforcement, copy of which was obtained by ABN TV, FENRAD expressed “concerned that the said report which covered a period of 18 years from 2001 to 2019 revealed how 13,777 awarded contracts were abandoned; that as an intervention agency the Commission got, during the period under review, the sum of ₦6 trillion (both budgetary and statutory funds) and yet could not deliver the goods in the oil-bearing areas; that the Commission operated, within the same period, 362 different bank accounts.”

FENRAD while commending the Minister, Akpabio for completing the audit process which started in 2019 and submitting the report, urged President Buhari to make public details of the said contracts abandoned; to whom they were awarded in line with transparency for which his government is known.

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“We however commend the Honourable Minister for submitting the reported work of which was begun in August 2019. However, we demand that His Excellency, in line with transparency and integrity which his administration is centred on, publish details of the said contracts abandoned; to whom they were awarded (tenderers/contractors); who awarded these contracts; list of the abandoned sites/projects; the bidding process – prequalification and selection and as well procurement as they all may have to do with the said report. FENRAD wishes also to know from His Excellency’s office the names of the 362 bank accounts and transactions made thereto and in what numbers.

“FENRAD supports the resolve shown by the Attorney General towards ensuring that no contract defaulter will go unpunished. We urge His Excellency to follow through and back resolve with action.

“Our attention was recently brought to counterclaim from NDDC sources claiming that the Presidential Forensic Audit Report lacks credibility and also the recent calls by regional local chiefs that the report be made a matter of public record. Since its establishment in the early 2000s after Oil Mineral Producing Areas Development Commission, OMPADEC was dissolved, NNDC has been fraught with corruption allegations the latest being the ₦1.5 billion “palliative” fund said to have been mismanaged following which Prof. Daniel Pondei’s case happened before us all.

“We call on Mr. President to, as a matter of transparency and probity, leave no stone unturned in meting out justice to any person found guilty in the NNDC contract and other scams. We believe Mr. President will spare no sacred cows and that, in line with our demand, the said audit report is made open for public scrutiny. We hope our requests meet His Excellency well.

“Accept, Sir, the assurances of our esteemed regards.” the letter read.

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