Fred Itua, Abuja
Senators, yesterday, were divided over plans to investigate alleged mismanagement of the Niger Delta Development Commission ( NDDC) by the Interim Management Committee (IMC).
The senate is seeking to probe allegations of the mismanagement of N40 billion by the IMC of the Commission within the last three months contained in a motion sponsored by Senator George Sekibo.
While some senators agreed that the probe should be carried out, others argued that a position had been taken by the sponsor of the motion even when no one had been indicted.
During the debate on the motion, Bala Ibn Na’Allah and Ajibola Basiru, through different constitutional point of orders, tried to stop the motion from sailing through, on the grounds that it was driven by mere allegations.
Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, however, ruled in favour of the probe, as he said said at the level of investigation, the veracity or otherwise of the allegations would be established.
The Senate, therefore, set up an Ad- hoc committee to be headed by Olubunmi Adetunbi to look into the financial transactions carried out by IMC on behalf of the Commission within the last three months and report back in four weeks.
Senator Thompson George Sekibo in the motion titled: ‘Urgent Need to Investigate Alleged Financial Recklessness in the NDDC’ had said “while President Buhari’s action of setting up an IMC and the forensic audit may have been conceived to forestall the financial recklessness of the commission and reposition it for fast-tracking of the development of the region, the IMC has been more bedevilled with the same financial misuse, misapplication, misappropriation or outright fraud in the management of the funds of the commission. Within the last three months, the commission has spent over N40 billion of the commission ‘s fund without recourse to established processes of funds disbursements, which has open up further suspicion among stakeholders of the Niger Delta Region.”