The Honourable Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Sen. Godswill Akpabio, CON, has reiterated that the directives by President Muhammadu Buhari for the forensic auditing of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), is not to witch hunt anyone or group, but to ascertain what went wrong and put in place a governmental structure that will be result oriented.
Akpabio made this statement when a tripartite meeting was conveyed with the Interim Management Committee (IMC) of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), the lead Forensic Consultant and the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs in Abuja, on Tuesday February 4th, 2020.
According to Sen. Akpabio, “the Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP) has assessed the firm and found them fit to be the leading Consulting Firm that will lead the appointment of other forensic auditors for the NDDC audit spanning between 2001- 2019. “We have received the approval of BPP to now commence the exercise” he said.
Speaking further on the proposed methodology of carrying out the exercise, the Minister noted that the next task is to work in collaboration with the Ministry to bring in experienced and notable forensic auditors with international reputation, so that whatever report is produced will be accepted and enforceable within and outside the country.
The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs, Mr. Olusade Adesola explained that the tripartite meeting was to bring at par the various stakeholders in the forensic audit team, and address all grey areas of concern. Adding that if we recall, the directive of Mr. President was to address the issues of irregularities in NDDC, Adesola also disclosed that the Auditor-General for the Federation, Mr. Mkpe Ayine, interacted with the Consulting Firm to verify if they have the capacity to do the Job.
The Executive Director Projects of Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, and the Chairman of NDDC Contracts Verification Committee, Dr. Cairo Ojougboh, described the presentation as thought-provoking, that the Consulting Firm is well equipped and deemed fit to carry out the forensic exercise.
Dr. Cairo clarified that NDDC is an agency under the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs that the forensic auditing is above the limit of the Commission to supervise, he added that the Ministry is the procuring entity but the Commission have to be carried along in the exercise.
Mr. Kabiru Ahmed, the lead forensic Consultant of Messrs Olumuyiwa Basiru & Company, during his presentation confirmed the readiness of the firm to commence the forensic audit and ensure that the Presidential Mandate is achieved. Adding that “competence will be the watchword.”
Head (Press & PR)
5th February, 2020