CORRUPTION: After stealing N78b, NDDC MD, Kemebradikumo Pondei, faints at hearing - Breaking News in Nigeria today 247 | TheWatchNGR


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Tuesday, July 21, 2020

CORRUPTION: After stealing N78b, NDDC MD, Kemebradikumo Pondei, faints at hearing

CORRUPTION: After stealing N78b, NDDC MD, Kemebradikumo Pondei, faints at hearing

The Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, on Monday said most contracts of the Niger Delta Development Commission were awarded to members of the National Assembly.

Akpabio said this in Abuja at the sitting of the House of Representatives committee investigating the NDDC.

Also on Monday, the NDDC acting Managing Director, Prof Kemebradikumo Pondei, slumped while being interrogated by the lawmakers.

Besides the forensic audit of the commission ordered by the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), both the Senate and the House of Representatives are currently investigating alleged financial recklessness in the commission.

Pondei and other top officials of the NDDC had on Thursday walked out of the House of Representatives committee probing the commission after calling for the resignation of its Chairman, Mr Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, accusing him of “crime against the commission.”

When the committee began its sitting on Monday, its chairman,  withdrew from the probe and his Deputy, Thomas Ereyitomi,  presided over the hearing.

Pondei was the first to make his presentation when the committee resumed its sitting at 12noon on Monday.

He said between January and May 31, N34bn was given to the NDDC  by the Federal Government. He said out of the expenditure from October 31, 2019 to May 31, 2020, the current interim management committee led by him spent N59.1bn out of the N81.5bn spent by the NDDC within the period. He informed that he assumed office on February 20, 2020.

“Out of the N51.9bn, it is also verifiable that N38.6bn was spent on capital projects. The IMC published a list of contractors who have been paid up to May 5 (a total sum of) N35.3bn and no contractor said he was not paid. In all this, the IMC did not award any of those contracts; they are historical contracts that existed before we came.

“On recurrent expenditure, N20.5bn was expended by the current IMC between February 20 and May 31, 2020. It is good to note that a large proportion of the payments were from a backlog of expenditure that the previous managements had incurred and did not pay.”

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