THE Ijaw Youths Council (IYC) has warned against an alleged plot by the Muhammadu Buhari-led government to reappoint the current Chairman and Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) for another four years tenure contrary to the principles of rotation enshrined in the Act establishing the commission.
The plot was allegedly being spearheaded by embattled Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice Mr Abubakar Malami.
He was said to have forwarded a legal memo to President Muhammadu Buhari to reappoint the current NDDC board chairman, Sen Victor Egba-Udoma and the MD, Nsima Ekere contrary to the provisions of the Act establishing the Commission in year 2,000.
The IYC factional president, Mr Eric Omare, at a press conference in Warri, Delta State, alleged that the All Progressive Congress-led Federal Government would soon make public the reappointment of Sen Egba-Udoma and Ekere in spite of being the turn of Delta and Bayelsa states to produce chairman and Managing Director of the commission.
Omare stated that the plotted reappointment was not only satanic, but unacceptable to the Ijaws in Delta and Bayelsa, warning of grave dangers if the plot was not stepped down and Malami called to order.
Omare, however, explained that the Ijaw youths were not against people of Cross Rivers State or Akwa-Ibom, but interested in adherence to the rule of law, reiterating that it was the turn of Delta and Bayelsa to produce the chairman and MD of the commission.
“There was history, when NDDC was established in 2000. Godwin Omene from Delta was the MD; along the way, he had an issue and Emmanuel Aguariavwodo completed Omene’s tenure.
“He did not start a new term. Why should the tenure of the outgoing NDDC be extended for another four years?
“This is totally unacceptable to the youths of the Niger Delta region and we will resist it with our last blood because the establishment of NDDC was laid by blood of Ijaw youths, nay Niger Delta youths who died in the struggle.
“We are ready to use our blood to protect the sanctity of the NDDC Act.
“So, we won’t allow any APC cabal to change the precedence established in the appointment of chairman and MD for NDDC.
“We do not have issues with Cross Rivers and Akwa-Ibom states indigenes that are occupying these offices, but you don’t rob Peter to pay Paul.
“It is the turn of Delta to produce the chairman of NDDC, while Bayelsa produces the MD by production quantum.
“It amounts to robbing Peter to pay Paul for Akwa-Ibom to produce MD for another four years,” he warned.
Omare called on President Buhari to immediately rescind the decision and start the process of approving the appointment of a new board for the NDDC, adding that under the NDDC Act, Buhari could reappoint states representative, but could not reappoint the chairman and MD for another tenure of four years as it was against the spirit of rotation and zoning.