The attention of the Honourable Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio has been drawn to a poorly scripted tissue of lies by POINTBLANK NEWS alleging that the Interim Management Board of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) had sought the nod of the Central Bank of Nigeria to withdraw N1.9 billion for payment as water hyacinth contract.
According to a statement signed by Anietie Ekong, Chief Press Secretary to the Honourable Minister of Niger Delta Affairs who states that This is nothing but one in the series of sponsored campaign of calumny against Senator Akpabio which some unscrupulous websites have been recruited to launch against the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs. The story is fictitious and false in its entirety. Instead of relying on unnamed “sources” we challenge the authors of this wildly unreasonable news story to substantiate it with facts or be consigned to the dustbin of junk journalism where it belongs.
We are aware that since President Muhammadu Buhari ordered the forensic audit of the NDDC from 2001 till date, many vested interests including politicians and contractors and those who have had their hands soiled in the NDDC cookie jar have vowed to truncate the audit exercise. These people who have over the years looted the commonwealth of the Niger Delta people and kept the region in its present state of underdevelopment have found in Senator Akpabio an object of attack through concocted stories by rogue websites, for carrying out this Presidential mandate.
The revelations by the Interim Management Committee of the gargantuan sleaze that have been going on in the Commission over the years and which have enriched a few people and shortchanged majority of the people of the Niger Delta have justified President Buhari for ordering the forensic audit and makes it imperative that the exercise must go on no matter the blackmail of the person of Senator Akpabio.
In the light of the blatant falsehood, misinformation and malicious propaganda published by some news websites against Senator Akpabio, we wish to state that no amount of sponsored cooked up stories meant to tarnish the image of the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs will deter him from carrying this directive of Mr President to the letter.