Chairman, Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions in the 8th Senate, Samuel Anyanwu has berated the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, for listing his name as one of the lawmakers that beneffited from the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) contracts.
Speaking with journalists in Abuja, Anyawu said his lawyers would reach out to Akpabio to retract his allegation.
He said he had tried to reach out to the Minister over the allegation but his calls have not been returned.
“By tomorrow( today) or next tomorrow, my lawyers are going to write to Akpabio to retract it or give us the facts after which if he doesn’t do anything about this, I will take the next step.
“Because I am a politician, and a prominent one for that matter, in my state and Nigeria, I choose to clear the air on the so-called allegation that I benefited from contracts by NDDC.
“First I was shocked to hear my name. Very shocked that honourable Minister of Niger Delta could mention my name that I was awarded contracts.
“First of all I am from Imo state, Imo state is one of the oil-producing states and a member of NDDC, if you remember, it was because of the suffering of the south-east that I moved and sponsored the bill for South-East Development Commission and I was a member of the committee on NDDC. The current minister of Niger Delta affairs was also a member and was the minority leader of the senate.
“As a member of the committee on NDDC, I attracted projects to my constituency, no contract was ever awarded to me, the beneficiaries of these contracts are my people that I represent, Imo east who are members of the Niger Delta and I challenge the honourable minister and NDDC to go through their records if there was any contract awarded to me or any dime traceable to me. So it is disheartening, so as politicians you have political enemies who would act on these to work against you and that is why I feel very very hurt on this issue and I felt I had to clear the air and so you hear my side of the story.
“Some of those projects that I attracted to my constituency, I had complaints, from even the contractors that NDDC has not paid them even a dime and I have it on good authority that NDDC does not pay mobilisation for contracts.
“I am using this medium to call on NDDC to go to my constituency and complete the projects they have started.
“It was only three names I saw, Senator Matthew Urhoghide, Chairman of the committee, Senator Peter Nwaoboshi and Senator James Manager and we were about 18 members in that Committee. Even James Manager was not even a member of the committee.
“If there are issues, I feel the honourable minister is educated enough, please let us see the projects, the contracts, name of the companies, the bank where the money was paid, CAC is there, why do you have to insult people like that?
“I am no longer in the Senate, almost two years, I have left and managing my quiet life and watching what Nigeria will turn out to be. So if you have issues with the national assembly members, which I understand since he became a minister he has, that has nothing to do with me.
“Before we left, our position with Saraki that is part of the things we are suffering today. That’s the truth. I am the only one not in the Senate why mention my name when I have nothing to do with it, I felt very very hurt,” the Senator said.