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Allocation Of Miserable, Paltry N16bn To Projects In Cross River Under NDDC Appropriation Act 2023 Unconstitutional, Must Not Stand

By Okoi Obono-Obla

Why would the management of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) allocate a paltry and miserable N16 billion worth of projects to Cross River State in the financial year 2023-2024 under the NDDC Appropriation Act 2023?
What gives the NDDC the audacity to insult the people of Cross River State with reckless abandon and ignominy?

The NDDC Act enumerated the following States as members of the NDDC:

1. Abia;
2. Akwa Ibom;
3. Bayelsa;
4. Cross River;
5. Delta;
6. Edo;
7. Imo;
8. Ondo;
9. Rivers.

Therefore, every State enumerated is equal to each other and must be treated equally without any shade or iota of discrimination.

In cognizance of this principle of equality of NDDC States, section 4 (a-i) of the NDDC Act 2000 (as amended) provides that the position of Chairman shall rotate among the member States in the following alphabetical order thus:

1. Abia;
2. Akwa Ibom;
3. Bayelsa;
4. Cross River;
5. Delta;
6. Edo;
7. Imo;
8. Ondo;
9. Rivers.

The argument that the makers of the Budget or Appropriation Act premised their decision to allocate only N16 billion to Cross River State (out of N900 billion) that Cross River State doesn’t contribute anything to oil production is therefore wicked, illegal, wrongful twisted, untenable, malicious, balderdash, and perverse.

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There is nothing under the NDDC Act to support such an argument.

The management of NDDC cannot input or put something on what is not contemplated by the NDDC Act.

It is also unconstitutional because the Nigerian Constitution prohibits any form of discrimination against any person or group of persons or entities under any guise and ramifications.

Cross River State has three senators in the Senate and eight members in the House of Representatives, what was the role in this blatant and egregious injustice visited on the people of Cross River State?

It is trite that the Senate and House of Representatives constitute the National Assembly which has the responsibility for deliberation and passage of the NDDC Appropriation Act 2023.

CAVEAT: Views expressed in this article are those of Barr. Okoi Obono-Obla and not in any way related to that of CONVERSEER and or its staff.

Editorial Team
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