The Niger Delta Elders Forum has dismissed the proposed meeting between Niger Delta Minister, Senator Godswill Akpabio and presidents of various ethnic nationality youth groups in the nine Niger Delta states, describing it as an attempt to buy time to perpetuate the interim management set up in the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
A statement by Chief Tonye Ogbogbula, National President of the forum, accused the minister of trying to use mushroom associations to frustrate the agitation by youths for the inauguration of the NDDC board, insisting that no authentic and established youth group from the zone would attend such meeting.
The group said topshots of the Ministry of Niger Delta have been shopping for “portfolio associations” that are ready to praise and endorse every action of Akpabio.
It said the authentic Niger Delta groups are angry that Akpabio has, for one year, not only failed to conclude the forensic audit of the NDDC as promised, but also refused to inaugurate the commission’s board.
The group condemned the action of one Niger Delta Ethnic Nationalities Youth Council, which recently passed a vote of confidence in Akpabio, saying this does not represent feelings in the region.
The Niger Delta Elders Forum said there was no going back on the demand for inauguration of the NDDC board as outlined by South South governors.
It insisted that the NDDC board should be inaugurated to end the illegality going on as there is no provision for an interim management.