Governors of Akwa Ibom, Imo and Delta states on Monday distanced themselves from the claim by the Niger Delta Development Commission that they (Niger Delta governors) were behind the order to probe the agency.
President Muhammadu Buhari had last week order a forensic probe of the NDDC, stating that such an investigation became necessary following public complaints against the interventionist agency.
But the NDDC alleged that some governors of Niger Delta states were instigating its probe and plotting to hijack the commission.
Akwa Ibom State Governor, Emmanuel Udom, described the claim by the NDDC that governors from the Niger Delta states were plotting to control the agency as baseless and unfounded.
Udom, who spoke through the state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr Charles Udoh, expressed disappointment that despite being the highest revenue contributor to the national economy, not even a kilometre of road had been constructed by the NDDC in the state.
He said, “The allegations are totally baseless and unfounded. Akwa Ibom State contributes the highest revenue to the national purse, yet there is nothing in the state in terms of federal presence.
“One cannot point to a single kilometre of road constructed by the NDDC in the state; is that fair?”
Also, the Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, explained that the decision to embark on a forensic probe of the interventionist agency was solely that of the Federal Government.
Okowa, who spoke through the state Commissioner for Information, Mr Charles Aniagwu, said, “It is the Federal Government’s decision; you cannot begin to say whether we are in support or not if the Federal Government wants to ask questions like it is doing in other sectors.
“If the Federal Government wants to look at those that it gave money to, it is its decision. “The most important thing is that Federal Government wants to look into their process.”
However, the Imo State Governor, Emeka Ihedioha, who spoke through his Special Adviser, Media, Mr. Steve Osuji, pointed out that President Buhari did not need the permission of governors of the Niger Delta to direct the probe of the NDDC.
He said, “I don’t think President Muhammadu Buhari needs the permission of the governors of the oil producing states to direct the audit of the NDDC.
Meanwhile, the Ijaw Youth Council has expressed satisfaction over the move to probe the commission.
The IYC President, Mr Eric Omare, told newsmen that there was nothing wrong with the exercise.
Omare stated, “It does not matter whether the proposed forensic probe was instigated by the governors, youths, women group or whoever, what is important is if the exercise will be done in good faith that will lead to some level of sanity.
“If those who have been managing the place over the years feel that they have done what they are supposed to do, then they should come forward and present their records and stop pointing accusing finger at some sections of society.