The youth of Ibeno Local
Government Area in Akwa Ibom State are demanding for the appointment of an indigene of the area as substantive Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
Speaking under the umbrella of Ibeno Youth Council (IBTC), they alleged that in spite of the fact that the area is the largest oil producing and account for 70 per cent of all crude oil and Gas lifted out of Akwa Ibom State, it has continued to be denied its fair share in terms of appointments and infrastructural development.
A communiqué signed by the youth president, Godwin Sunday Ikot, and Secretary Samuel Akpan Akpanam, said “we align with the position of the secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) Engr Babachir David Lawal, that the NDDC should be restructured to be manned by core professionals as it was during the maiden and inaugural board rather than by politicians in order to help transform the Niger region.”
According to the communiqué, it was only by proper re-organisation of the commission that it could serve as a strategic development organisation to be able to address the peculiar needs of the region and its people.
“We plead with Mr President to appoint an Akwa Ibom technocrat, a core professional from Ibeno Local Government Area to reposition the NDDC, to execute its mandate”, the communiqué stated.
It blamed what it described as loss of focus by NDDC to serve as a strategic interventionist agency and vehicle over the years to the system of appointing politicians into the leadership of the commission.
It particularly stressed that the local government area has remained neglected inspite of its position as the most friendly host community to various oil and Gas companies and emphasized the imperative of the Federal Government to be fair to the area by appointing a son or daughter of Ibeno as the managing Director of NDDC.
It would be recalled that since the appointment of the Acting Managing Director of NDDC, Mrs Ibim Semenitari, by President Muhammadu Buhari, indigenes of Akwa Ibom State, where the immediate Past NDDC Managing Director, Chief Dan Abia comes from, have been agitating for the president to re-appoint an indigene of the state.