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How I resisted Akpabio’s oath of secrecy by former NDDC boss

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How I resisted Akpabio’s oath of secrecy by former NDDC boss

The former Acting Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the immediate past Interim Management Committee (IMC) of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Barrister Joy Nunieh has revealed how she was pressured to take oat of secrecy.
She accussed the minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio of pressuring her to take the oath of loyalty, but she resisted
She explained that, the oath would have held her spell bound to be used to siphon the NDDC funds without being able to resist as a result of the oath placed on her.
Recounting her ordeal, she said she would have been jailed if she had succumbed to Akpabio’s ‘oath of secrecy’
The former NDDC boss explained that Akpabio pressured her three times to place her under oath to the extent that they took the matter to the Villa, as she vehemently resisted.

She feared that she would go to five years imprisonment if under Godswill Akpabio’s oath she commits infraction on the Public Procurement Act and wasn’t able to speak out, while he will be going about a free man.

She spoke on Friday at the venue of the Senate Ad-hoc Committee investigating the financial recklessness in the Niger Delta Development Commission.

She said: “He told me to take an oath. Though he denied that, he told me, three times until we had a reconciliation at the Villa in the office of Mr Abba who is the S.A. to the President on domestics.

“In that meeting was Alhaji Maikano and he said the only condition is when I take the oath and I didn’t take the oath and will never take it.

“After that, he said, he was going to remove me and he started the campaign of calumny against me. I didn’t even answer him because the fact will speak for itself.”

On the procurement process, “I refuse to go with him to the FEC meeting to deceive Mr. President and the reason is because the law says if I contravene a section of the procurement Act, it’s five years imprisonment without an option of fine.

“So if I had gone with him to deceive Mr. President I would have been in trouble because they said it’s 2020 budget, but Akpabio went and got approval when the budget was not ready.”

Nunieh further explained her position on the controversial contracts in the NDDC denying that she never made any payment without Akpabio’s knowledge.

“One of the issues raised against me was that I awarded contracts without them knowing about it. Am sure that is what they told you people yesterday.

“Apparently, Dr. Cairo Ojougboh never sit in the office, so he never know the workings and the bureaucracy of payments in the office.

“One, I am just a viewer of a platform that made payments in NDDC. There are different steps to take before payments are made in NDDC. One there is the issue of lassa fever which obviously they didn’t carry that one along.

“Nobody make payments in NDDC without Godswill Akpabio’s consent. When we first came to NDDC on the day of inauguration we were going to the camp, he told me Madam MD, if you don’t do what I said, the same pen I used in signing your letter; that is the same pen I will use in removing you.

Narrating further she said: “He said the first thing I should do, when I get to Port Harcourt, is to change dollars in NDDC account into Naira. I told him, I am scared to do that. He claimed that I have poverty mentality that I was afraid of money. All of you knew he accused me on that, saying I am afraid to spend money.

“After two days, he came to Port Harcourt and told that what I should do is to change dollars and I said I cannot just do that. He said I remove Mr. Katulgo from legal a d send me on compulsory retirement and he said we cannot have a northerner as head of the legal unit.

“I said, I cannot do that. I do not have the powers because I am just an IMC. It’s a criminal offence, and against public service rules for me to do that. He said I should repost all other directors that refused to take his instruction during my predecessor’s time, that is the person who was there before I came.

According to her, Akpabio wanted Senator Peter Nwaoboshi who is the Chairman of Senate Committee on NDDC and that of his House counterpart, Hon. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo implicated for their resistance to the idea of Interim Management Committee at that time.

“So, he came and ask me to draft a letter on my letterhead implicating Senator Peter Nwaoboshi for collecting contracts in NDDC. I told him that I will not do that I am a lawyer and who alledges should prove. He said Senator Nwaoboshi is giving us trouble and beside, he didn’t recognize the IMC. I said I will not do that letter. He said I was ungrateful and I refuse to do that letter.

“Dr. Cairo now said he will do the letter. He said if Akpabio asked him to kill, he will kill before he ask why did he kill and I said, for me, I will not do that. At that place, there was one Mr. Etiebet who was the only NDDC staff that was present at that meeting. He now asked Dr. Cairo to go and sent for letter headed from the office. They now went and send for the letter headed. Dr, Cairo now did a letter which I want to tender at the Ad-hoc Committee before I came late alleging that Senator Nwaoboshi had contracts and I said if I signed, any document from me seen by Mr. President, he will believe. So I will only write that EDP who should know about it.

“The next thing he told me is that I should make sure these people, leaves the procurement because apparently Akpabio before I came when himself and Festus Keyamo became Ministers, in their first meeting, they awarded 30 contracts of water hyacinths.

“Mr. Linus who was Director Finance refused to sign because it didn’t follow due process. He also said, I should implicate the Chairman, House Committee on NDDC because the Chairman of House Committee has gone to Ondo State to hold a meeting to plan against him. I said, I don’t know that one, I have never seen him. But for Senator Nwaoboshi, he was my classmate at the Law school and we were called to bar the same day, however, I didn’t see him since we were called to bar, I didn’t really remember him and that was about thirty years ago.

“When we finished that, Akpabio said I should bring all things and start pay, I said, I cannot pay for water hyacinths because the budget for water hyacinths was about 3 to 5 billion I cannot remember exactly the figure now.

“The NDDC before I came has overstretched for about 50 billion for hyacinths and so the National Assembly has written us that we should not pay for anything like that. Guess what, Akpabio never signed any documents. He will always refuse to sign, but tell you to go and commit fraud.

“For instance, he told me to go and raise a memo for an emergency contract for flood victims. You people remember that there was flood which we went to Channels AIT and all that.”

The investigation has been concluded with expectation that the report would be submitted to the Senate in two weeks time.

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FG declares its readiness to deploy 5G network after precautionary measures

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FG declares its readiness to deploy 5G network after precautionary measures

By Aminci Audu

The minister of communications and Digital Economy Isah Ali Pantami has declared that Nigeria is ready for 5th Generation Network (5G) as long as the major challenges are taken care of.

Pantami spoke yesterday, at a one day investigative hearing on the present status of 5G network organised by the joint Senate committee on communication, sScience and Technology, ICT and Cybercrime and Primary Healthcare and Communicable Diseases.

The minister in his presentation allayed the fear among Nigerians over the planned deployment of the network saying the Federal Government has taken all necessary precautions by investigating through research and trial on all issues raised.

He said “The position is that we are almost at the final stage. So now, Nigeria is ready for 5G as long as we address the major challenges.”

“We have not gotten there, wether we will deploy 5G but we are on track conducting research, investigations, engaging stakeholders and definitely if all issues are addressed, the executive will support the deployment of 5G in Nigeria.”

He noted that so far no negative impacts has been established from the research and trial carried both locally and at the international level. 

On the speculation that the 5G network escalated the COVID-19 he said there is no link between 5G and COVID-19.
“And there is no relationship between 5G and any desease. The only issue being raised usually is about radiation.  But people don’t realise that the radiation of 4G is more harmful than that of 5G. 
“The radiation of microwave oven at home is more harmful than that of the 5G. The radiation of even the smart phone itself is even more harmful that that of 5G

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SELF backs Sylva over choice of Saipem on Bonny NLNG Train 7 contract

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SELF backs Sylva over choice of Saipem on Bonny NLNG Train 7 contract

The South-south Emerging Leaders Forum (SELF) has faulted allegations of wrong doing leveled against the Minister of State for Petroleum Chief Timipre Sylva over the choice of Saipem, an Italian firm to handle the Bonny NLNG Train 7 contract.

SELF in a statement argued that the deal also endorsed by the Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Local Content Board Engr. Simbi Wabote was in the best interest of the country.

SELF position was in response to an online publication which accused the duo of bribe taking running into millions of naira in the deal.

SELF warned the publisher of the medium , Mr Jackson Ude, to desist from blackmailing leaders of the South-south extraction in a bid to score political goals.

Urging the Publisher of the online medium to show proof his allegation, SELF noted: “We strongly condemn the allegation leveled by Pointblanknews.com and its sponsors, this is highly condemnable and viewed as a sponsored plot to instigate hate against the Minister and derail his concentrations.

“This is ridiculous and belittling of Jackson Ude, the face behind this blackmail for being petty to the ground level for publishing tissues of lies about the persons of Timipre Sylva and Simbi Wabote.

“Nigerians should not believe this and throw it into the dust bin. It’s incumbent on all well-meaning Nigerians to support the positive drive of Minister and collaborate with him, towards the actualization of the onerous task at stake.

“Although Jackson Ude and his medium Pointblanknews.com are criminally known for thriving in the business of blackmail, especially against the officeholders from the Niger Delta region. But this forum will henceforth resist this criminality by deploying all known instrumental of law to fight the faces behind these tissues of lies.

“This Forum is using this medium to warn the likes of Jackson Ude to stay away from Nigeria and the South-south most especially if they are not ready to turn a new leaf because the business of blackmail has long become outdated and unpopular.”

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Great relief as Kidnapped Punch reporter, Nnodim regains freedom

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Great relief as Kidnapped Punch reporter, Nnodim regains freedom


It was a great relief for journalists, family members, friends and well wishers when the news filtered in that the Punch Newspapers reporter, Victor Okechukwu Nnodim who was kidnapped from his residence in Kubwa, Bwari Area Council on Thursday has regained freedom.

He was released almost 48hours hours after his abduction alongside two other neighbours who were also abducted.
It was gathered early hours of Sunday that he has been released and in high spirits.

The media world was jolted by the news of his abduction, as many turned prayer warriors supplicating for his freedom without any harm

His abductors, NationaUpdate learnt later communicated with his elder sister who resides in Lagos demanding for N10 million.

At the time of this report it could not be ascertained if ransom was paid before he regained freedom, but colleagues made efforts to contributed money towards his release, when it became obvious that the kidnappers were bent on collecting ransom.

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