Reprieve Underway For Niger Delta Communities In Imo, As Uzodinma Urges List of Abandoned Projects

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Governor Hope Uzodimma of Imo State has called for a comprehensive audit of all abandoned projects that litter the nooks and crannies of the States that make up the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).

He did on Tuesday when he received in audience at the Government House Owerri, the Minister of Niger Delta Development, Engr. Abubakar Momoh, who came to Imo State on official duty with his key officials.

Apart from the call for a comprehensive audit of all abandoned projects in the Ministry of Niger Delta and NDDC States, Governor Uzodimma further suggested that the Amnesty Programme of the Ministry be strengthened to enable the people, particularly the youths of the region, to have commensurate value from the programme.

Governor Uzodimma requested the Minister to mop up all federal allocations meant for the region and deploy them appropriately to ensure that the area is given what is due and appropriate to it in terms of infrastructure.

He promised to continue to support and partner with the Ministry of Niger Delta Development, the NDDC and other Agencies under the Ministry, to achieve the expected goals.

He called on the youths of the Nigerian Delta region to desist from vandalizing NDDC projects or federal government assets in the region, appealing to the Federal Government to intensify efforts at creating employment and other opportunities that will make life more meaningful for the teeming youths of the region.

Governor Uzodimma challenged the Ministry and the NDDC to take serious interest in the documentation and completion of the abandoned projects in the region, noting that, “where all the abandoned projects are completed the region will be more than 80 per cent developed.”

He expressed delight to receive the Minister and his team in Imo State and commended Engr. Momoh on the changes he has so far initiated in the Ministry since he assumed office.

The Governor however sympathized with the Minister on the shoddy nature some projects were implemented in his Ministry before now as well as the ubiquitous abandonment of projects which the Minister has met on ground on assumption of office, and encouraged him to remain as focused today as he was on assumption of office.

Earlier while informing the Governor on why they were in Imo State, Engr.  Momoh said that they came “to inspect ongoing projects of the Ministry of Niger Delta Development area and the Niger Delta Development Commission and to solicit greater partnership and cooperation of the Governors of the nine States of the region.”

The Minister maintained that “the Ministry of Niger Delta Development and the NDDC are never in competition with the States rather they are in partnership for the progress and development of the region.”

He acknowledged the existence of many challenges, especially in the area of abandoned projects, but promised that his Ministry and the Commission are on course to change the narrative.

The Minister used the opportunity to inform the Governor of the scheduled meeting of the National Council on Niger Delta Affairs that will be held between April 16 and 18, 2024 where the progress and prosperity of Niger Delta Region would be discussed.

Concluding, he thanked the Governor for the good works he is doing in Imo State, commending him, especially, on road infrastructure and other legacy projects.

Engr. Momoh also made particular mention of the ongoing flyover project which the 3R government of Governor Uzodimma has recently embarked upon in Imo State.

The Deputy Governor, Lady Chinyere Ekomaru, the Secretary to the State Government, Chief Cosmas Iwu, the Chief of Staff, Barr. Nnamdi Anyaehie and other top Government functionaries joined the Governor in receiving the minister.

Also present were the Member Representing Ohaji/Egbema/Oguta/Oru West Federal Constituency, Rt. Hon. Eugene Dibiagwu who is also the House of Representatives Chairman on Niger Delta and Amnesty, the Federal Commissioner representing Imo State at the NDDC, Dr. Kyrian Uchegbu, former minister of State Science and Technology, Chief Henry Ikoh, the Chairman Imo State Council of Elders, HRM Eze Cletus Ilomuanya, former Imo State APC Chairman, Barr. Malcolm Nlemigbo among others.

The Minister was accompanied by the Permanent Secretary and Directors in the Ministry of Niger Delta Development.