Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio has denied saying that members of the National Assembly got contracts from the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
He said; “No, you are wrong. That was not what the speaker demanded.”
“The speaker wanted to know whether there was undue influence from any section of the national assembly in respect of contracts in the NDDC. He did not say whether they were contractors, so I am hearing this from you.”.
“This is like homecoming and the national assembly ought to have resumed today (Tuesday). They postponed it, so I intended that as soon as the resumption takes place, I am here.”.
“It is part of my effort to support the president’s decision that there must be a much more cordial relationship between the executive and legislature.”
“In fact, the president recently set up a tripartite committee made up of the party (APC), the national assembly and the executive to ensure oneness because we are running one government.”
“The current government wants to leave a legacy for Nigerians. We cannot do this if all the arms of government are not cooperating.”
However, while appearing before a House of Representatives Committee probing alleged mismanagement of N81.5 billion by the commission, the minister said national assembly members were the biggest beneficiaries of contracts awarded by the commission.
Thereafter, Femi Gbajabiamila, speaker of the house of representatives, charged him to name the lawmakers or face the “wrath of the house”.
He went on to name Senator Peter Nwaoboshi, Chairman of the Senate Committee on NDDC, Senator Matthew Urhoghide, Senate Committee Chairman on Public Accounts and Senator James Manager as some of the beneficiaries.