NDDC: Ndoma-Egba’s proactive leadership
.Building sustainable man-power development in Niger Delta
By Michael Jegede (In Abuja)
When former Senate Leader, Senator Victor Ndoma-Egba, SAN, was appointed the Chairman, Governing Board of Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, there was no doubt in the minds of many observers that he was going to stir up activities, to place the interventionist agency on the path of progress.
At the inaugural meeting of Ndoma-Egba led board, a 21-point agenda was set to reaffirm the agency’s commitment to making its system and processes more transparent for sustainable development of the oil-rich Niger Delta region. While reeling out the agenda, Ndoma-Egba stated that it was imperative to create opportunities, “for public participation to engender confidence in the activities of the Commission by all stakeholders in the region.”
He also emphasized the need for prioritisation of projects and programmes. He said, “Deliberate efforts must be made to determine the number of projects that can be focused upon and quickly completed.”
Ndoma-Egba equally declared that, “Efforts must be made to implement an NDDC’s Master Plan. Ad hoc ‘short term’ solutions have proved unsustainable. We have to transparently and strategically engage critical stakeholders, such as the governors, members of State Houses of Assembly, the staff, traditional rulers, oil companies, youths (including the agitators), women, physically challenged and environmental right activists. Efficient collaboration would make the Commission an actual development agency, instead of its present perception as a contract awarding Commission.”
Accordingly, since he assumed office as NDDC Chairman in November 2016, the ex-Senate Leader has been focused in pursuing the realisation of the set agenda, in line with the Commission’s mandate of ensuring an enhanced and all-round development of the Niger Delta zone.
Under his supervision, several abandoned NDDC projects have been revisited and completed across the region, from Abia, to Akwa-Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta, Edo, Imo, Ondo and Rivers States. Efforts towards skill acquisition training and human capacity building programmes have been intensified by the Commission. This would certainly, help to build sustainable man-power development in the region.
Ndoma-Egba has worked harmoniously with the Managing Director, MD, Nsima Ekere and other members of his board, to rekindle hope in the people of the Niger Delta through proper handling of affairs of NDDC.
Moreso, recently, the people of Arondizuogu community in Ideato Local Government Area of Imo State, held an impromptu reception for Ndoma-Egba, while on inspection tour to Okigwe – Arondizuogu – Akokwa road, currently under construction by NDDC. As the major federal highway linking Imo and Abia States, the road is said to have been in total disrepair for many years.
The NDDC Chairman and his entourage, which included Ekere, Commissioners and senior officials of the Commission, ROUDO construction company Chairman, Chief Tony Chukwu, were received by members of Arondizuogu Traditional Council, ATC.
In his welcome speech, Chairman of ATC, HRH Eze Sir Kossman N. Kanu (Ikenuolueze), expressed profound gratitude to Ndoma-Egba and his team for the road project, which he said, means a lot to his people. He made a fervent plea to the NDDC Chairman for an extension of the road rehabilitation to cover the remaining short stretch of about 3km, in order to benefit more communities. The traditional ruler told Ndoma-Egba that a well-arranged reception would be fixed for December when the entire people of Arondizuogu would properly appreciate and honour him for the smiles he has put on their faces.
Responding, the former lawmaker thanked the people for receiving the project with great excitement, even as he granted the request seeking for an extension of the repair on the road by 3km.
The NDDC leadership under Ndoma-Egba continues to receive commendations from individuals and groups for good performance, as seen in its proactive steps and measures taken to fast track development in Niger Delta. Last month, the Vice Chancellor ,VC, of University of Uyo, UNIUYO, Professor Enefiok Essien, SAN, commended NDDC for speedy completion of the dual carriageway leading to the entrance of the main campus of the University. Essien likewise acknowledged other supports from the agency to UNIUYO, particularly the building of a modern 500-bed capacity hostel. The hostel project, in the words of the VC, has gathered a new momentum, reaching an advanced stage of completion.
(Michael Jegede, a journalist writes from Abuja).