NDDC, DESOPADEC, MINISTRY FAILED - CPEJ
Comrade Sheriff Mulade, the National Co-ordinator of Centre for Peace and Environmental Justice has blamed the failure to meet needs of the oil bearing communities on woeful performances of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs and the Delta State Oil Producing Areas Commission (DESOPADEC).
Mulade in an interview with Daily Sun in Warri, lambasted the handlers of the three corporate organizations and urged them to redouble their efforts in order to be relevant to the purpose for they were established. He spoke on some burning issues concerning the parastatals that, 'it is a pity that the ministry set up by late Musa Yar'Adua has failed woefully. The present headship is not doing anything. They keep on saying that there is a master plan for Niger Delta region. Honestly speaking, we don't need master plan, rather, we need master action to develop the place. We have gone beyond unworkable programme.
They should come out with viable ideas to assists people.'
According to him, the problem of Niger Delta is the people. It is a pity that the money being invested to develop the area goes into private pockets, because of the poverty level.
National Co-ordinator of Centre for Peace said, 'the Local Content Law is working and it is a welcome development. I want to commend the minister of petroleum for her doggedness even though she is undergoing series of attack from multi-nationals and some Northern Leaders.
He believed, Mrs. Deziani Allison Madueke is really working hard.
'My appeal to the president is that she should be given full independence to operate and implement all the laws and also enforce the Local Content act so that the indigenous people will benefit fully from the scheme.'It is only through that system the local people can benefit from their God given resources. For instance we have experts in all spheres of the oil industry.
'I can assure you that the people from this region can as well deliver too. I thank God that the indigenous contractors have been able to acquire a lot of equipment for modern Technology to meet up with International standard. I appeal that most of the contracts be given to the indigenes from now on,' he urged.
'In fact DESOAPDEC is not a commission for politicians and the settling of people. Rather, the commission was set up to develop the oil producing communities. It is a state government intervention for host communities but since inception, the commission has been used to settle some grudges and politicians,' he said. He advised Delta State Governor not to be using the commission to settle aggrieved politicians. DESOPADEC has a purpose for which it was established.
Despite the fact that the previous administration mismanaged the commission, does not give right to the state government to destroy it. DESOPADEC belong to the oil bearing communities, he observed. He further advised that the appointment of commission board members should be strictly selected from the host communities and selection should not be based on political party. In fact, the communities should be allowed to nominate who they want to represent them so that the fellow can be accountable to the people, he urged.
'It is rather unfortunate that DESOPADEC is a failed and paper tiger commission. Sadly, a lot of contractors are heavily indebted and today the bank interest rate is running into millions and at the end of the day the contractors will suffer it. In view of this, I want to further advice the Governor not to play politics with DESOPADEC, because it belongs to the host communities,' he stated.