The Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, has been alerted of a planned protest in the United Kingdom, by certain individuals and hirelings, most of who are masquerading as the Commission’s scholars, over non-payment of the scholarship fund.
This is part of an ongoing campaign, orchestrated by powerful individuals who are part of the systemic corruption uncovered by the Interim Management Committee, IMC, in the Commission’s administration of the Foreign Postgraduate Scholarship.
The Commission therefore reminds all to inform all stakeholders, the media, relevant agencies and all well-meaning Nigerians as follows: That in 2018, the Commission paid a total of $900,000.00 (Nine hundred Thousand Dollars) only to cover the Commission’s obligations to its scholars.
It further stated that in 2019, the amount paid rose to a total of $3.5million (Three million, Five Hundred Thousand Dollars) only, adding that recently, the IMC paid out a total of $5.99m (Five Million, Nine Hundred and Ninety Thousand Dollars) to cover all the verified obligations to our scholars.
“Now, there is a demand for an additional payment of $3million (Three Million Dollars), bringing the total to an alarming $9million (Nine Million Dollars). Therefore, the mission and goal behind this planned protest is patently dubious, mischievous, underhand and potentially criminal”.
“Some of the important questions everyone must ask are: why is the amount paid to cover our obligations to this foreign scholarship programme rising astronomically? Where are all these demands coming from? What do they cover? Who are behind them? It is important to note that since the establishment of the IMC, no scholarship has been awarded, due to the ongoing forensic audit. So why is the IMC being blackmailed, threatened, cajoled and intimidated to make these payments, without verification?”
Since the institution of the forensic audit by President Muhammadu Buhari, the IMC has uncovered a culture of rampant corruption and abuse in the Commission. Many very powerful individuals who benefited from the years of sleaze have been on the attack. Their unfortunate mission, which is against the directives of President Buhari and the dream and expectations of the people of the Niger Delta region, of a Commission that can finally and efficiently address their long years of neglect and poverty, is simple: to frustrate, scuttle and undermine the forensic audit, as well as cause the disbandment of the IMC.
“These frightened elements are fighting to ensure that the Federal Government is not able to unearth the culture of wanton abuse and corruption that necessitated the forensic audit”.