Minister for Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio has denied accusing members of the National Assembly of receiving 60 percent of the contracts at the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
The Speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila, who announced the receipt of Akpabio’s letter, said the minister claimed to have referred to old contracts awarded by the NDDC which had not been paid for and some of which are part of the constituency projects of the lawmakers.
Akpabio stated that the only reference he made to 60 percent during his presentation before the NDDC committee was in response to a question by a member of the committee.
He noted that the member had sought to know whether a Medical Director can serve as an Executive Director Project, to which he responded by saying that since 50 to 60 percent of NDDC contracts were medical related, there was nothing wrong in a Medical Director serving in that capacity.
Gbajabiamila however referred the letter to the House Committee on Ethics and Privileges to look at the merits of the minister’s arguments.
The minister’s response comes shortly after Gbajabiamila said the lawmakers would sue Akpabio for failing to prove that NDDC awarded contracts to them.
Read Also: Breaking: House Of Reps To Sue Niger Delta Affairs Minister, Akpabio For Perjury
On Monday, July 20, Akpabio while testifying at the House of Representatives panel investigating allegations of financial recklessness at the NDDC, alleged that most of the contracts awarded in the Commission were to members of the National Assembly.
Read Also: Gbajabiamila Gives Akpabio 48 Hours To Publish Names Of Lawmakers Awarded Contract By NDDC
On Tuesday, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila issued an ultimatum to the minister to publish the names of lawmakers whom he referred to.
The ultimatum elapsed today Thursday, July 23, and the house agreed to take Akpabio to court for his statement which it describes as “defamatory” and an attempt to “assassinate the character of the house”.
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