NDDC ‘N40bn probe drama’ continues with walk out, warrant of arrest

NDDC ‘N40bn probe drama’ continues with walk out, warrant of arrest

Thursday, July 16, 2020 3:34 pm


Professor Kemebradikumo Pondie ,Acting Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC.

However, in a resolution passed soon after the walk out, the House Committee on NDDC issued warrant of arrest for   Prof. Kemebradikumo Pondei.

Pondei had stormed out of the hearing after accusing the Chairman of the committee Rep. Olubumi Tunji-Ojo (APC-Ondo) of corruption.

“We in the NDDC is not comfortable with the Chairman of this committee, presiding over a matter.

“He is an accused party, the NDDC has over time accused  Rep. Olubumi Tunji-Ojo of different crimes against the NDDC and he has responded in the press.

“He is an interested party and we do not believe that the NDDC can have justice because he cannot seat on his own case.

“We have no issue of appearing, we appeared before the Senate ad hoc committee and as long as he reminds, we will not make any presentation,” he said.

After the walkout, Rep. Benjamin Kalu (APC-Abia) moved a motion for the arrest of Pondei which was unanomouslu adopted.

Kalu, who is the spokesman for the house, commended the committee members for the maturity exhibited following the provocations by the NDDC boss.

“I want to refer this committee as well as the invited guests to section 60 which says that, the Senate or the House of Representatives shall have powers to regulate its own procedure.

“It is within the parameters of the law that the house regulates its activities, this is a committee affair and not a personalised affair.

“I want to move that this committee invokes the provisions of section 89 of the Constitution and invoke our powers on warrant of arrest to compel the agency to come and answer how they have administered the money appropriated to them,” he said.

The committee, however, passed a vote of confidence on the chairman, describing him as a man of integrity and a leader of high reputation.

Earlier, Tunji-Ojo said that the committee was mandated by the house to carry out an investigation into the alleged misappropriation of funds in the agency.

He said that documents from Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation showed that the NDDC had spent N81.5 billion between January and May.

The chairman recalled that officials from the CBN and the OAGF had appeared at the hearing on Wednesday and confirmed the amount so far spent by the NDDC.

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