Senate President, Senator Ahmad Lawan said, on Tuesday, that the investigation being carried out by the Senate into the finances of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, was to complement the ongoing forensic audit which was ordered by the Federal Government.
Lawan, while inaugurating a seven-man ad-hoc committee on alleged financial recklessness in the NDDC, said: “We are in total support of the President’s directive for the forensic audit of the finances of NDDC, and this is, in some way, complementary to that directive.”
The investigation, he said, would avail the management of the commission an opportunity to defend the allegations against it.
Lawan said: “We have no predetermined position on the outcome of this investigation as an institution. Issues raised are allegations, therefore, the NDDC has the opportunity to come forward and defend its position.
“But we have a mindset and our mindset in the Senate is that we have to have an NDDC that is effective and efficient in service delivery to the people of Niger Delta. This is the essence of setting up that commission.
“So we want to see a situation where the very limited resources that are appropriated for the NDDC are prudently and transparently deployed for the development of the Niger Delta region.
“This is our mindset and we will not shy away from our responsibility at any time we feel a sense that that is not happening.”
He said the NDDC, as a pioneer intervention agency in the country, should take the lead on how its intervention could be effective, efficient and meet the yearnings of the people.
In his remarks, chairman of the ad-hoc committee, Senator Olubunmi Adetumbi, described the allegations that necessitated the setting up of the committee as “numerous and weighty as it involved misapplication and misappropriation of N40 billion” among others.
He assured the Senate leadership of the committee’s resolve to be open-minded.