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Reps direct NDDC to offset debts with 2019 budget

The House of Representatives on Tuesday directed the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) to offset its existing liabilities through the implementation of its 2019 budget.

The House Committee on NDDC issued the directive in Abuja when the interim management of the Commission led by the acting Managing Director, Mrs. Joy Nunieh, appeared before the lawmakers to defend the 2019 budget proposal.

At the last sitting, the Committee had vowed not to consider the 2020 budget proposed by NDDC until the 2019 budget was presented and considered.

The Chairman of the Committee, Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, accused the Commission of failing to implement its 2019 budget due to widespread infractions and sharp practices by the former management.

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Tunji-Ojo stated that as part of the measures towards ensuring implementation of NDDC’s 2019 budget, the Commission must present the list of all contractors it owed. He also stated that payment of claims would only be made after thorough verification and approval by the Committee.

The lawmaker also stated that the NDDC must recover the over N1 trillion owed it by various entities to offset its liabilities.

Tunji-Ojo noted that when the recommendations by the Committee are approved by the House, all ongoing projects in the NNDC’s 2019 budget would be rolled over to 2020.

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