Breaking: House Of Reps To Drag Akpabio To Court Over NDDC Contract Claims…The House of Representatives has directed its clerk to institute legal proceedings against the minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio.
Godswill Akpabio NDDC Updates
This follows the expiration of the 48-hour ultimatum issued by the Speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila for the Minister to disclose the names of lawmakers whom he claimed had received contracts from the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
Godswill Akpabio NDDC Updates
The House is set to sue Akpabio for perjury and civil defamation.
Top Gist Portal recalls Akpabio had alleged last week that sixty percent of contracts awarded by the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) went to members of the National Assembly.
In his response to the Minister’s claim, Speaker Gbajabiamila had given Akpabio 48 hours to substantiate his claim by providing the names of lawmakers who benefited from the contracts.
Akpabio has so far failed to provide the names as requested by the lawmakers.
Gbajabiamila therefore in a statement on Thursday, disclosed that he has instructed the Clerk of the House of Representatives to engage the services of legal counsel, and initiate a criminal complaint of perjury against the Minister, while also exploring the possibility of a civil defamation suit against the Minister.
The Speaker noted that the failure of the Minister to prove his allegation is an attempt to undermine the integrity of the National Assembly members and such would not be tolerated under his leadership.
Below is the full statement made available to Top Gist Portal
“Last Tuesday I issued a 48-hour ultimatum to the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs to substantiate his allegation that over 60% (sixty percent) of contracts awarded by the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) went to members of the National Assembly. I said then that the Honourable Minister owed it to himself and the country to provide evidence to support these serious allegations.”
“The Honourable Minister has failed to respond to my request. Therefore, I must conclude that his statement intended solely to gaslight the nation to avoid accountability for the evident maladministration and malfeasance in the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).”
“In my time in the House of Representatives, I have held every leadership position from Minority Whip, through to Minority Leader, Leader of the House and now Speaker.”
“I recognize that the House has not always lived up to the high expectations of the Nigerian people. As much as we still have a lot to do in that regard, I refuse to sit here in good conscience and allow anyone to assassinate the character of the House in an attempt to deflect accountability for their conduct in office. Such mendacity as was witnessed at the public hearing will not be tolerated from anybody no matter how highly placed.”
“This morning, I asked the Clerk of the House of Representatives to engage the services of legal counsel, and instruct them to initiate a criminal complaint of perjury against the Minister. At the same time, we will instruct counsel to explore the possibility of a civil defamation suit against the Minister.”
“The House of Representatives is a public trust placed in our care for the duration of our term in office. We must prove ourselves worthy of this public trust or risk the censure of history. Therefore, we will resist every attempt to undermine this institution, whether such attempts come from within or from outside. This House will live up to the highest expectations of the Nigerian people. This is our commitment, and we will not fail.”
“Thank you. God bless you all and God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”