29 December 2015, Yenagoa – The umbrella body of Ijaw youths, the Ijaw Youth Council Worldwide, has commended President Muhammadu Buhari for beginning the process of reorganising the Niger Delta Development Commission.
The President, IYC, Mr. Udengs Eradiri, said during a news conference in Yenagoa on Tuesday that one of the biggest problems of the Niger Delta was that the institutions managed by her people to empower and develop the region had now become a conduit for stealing money by Niger Delta people.
He said since the President had begun the process of reorganising Nigeria ,the NDDC was key to restructuring, adding that if the appointment was geared towards that purpose, the President should be commended.
The IYC President urged Buhari not to allow the NDDC to be used as a tool for political battles and therefore called on Seminetari to ensure the NDDC was properly managed.
Eradiri said, “I want to commend President Buhari for beginning the process of reorganising the NDDC. One of our biggest problems in the Niger Delta is that the institutions run by Niger Delta people to empower the people and develop the region is now a conduit for stealing money by Niger Delta people.
“We are our biggest problem; we have NDDC and it is becoming a problem for us in the region. Since the President has begun the process of reorganising Nigeria, the NDDC is key to restructuring the Niger Delta.
“So, if the appointment of Seminetari is geared towards reorganising the commission, we commend the President for it, but we just hope that they would not turn the NDDC to further tool for Vendetta and political battles.”
He also proposed for the decentralisation of the NDDC to the states for efficient productivity and better management of resources.
Eradiri, who also visited some prisons in the region with his council members, called for the rehabilitation of the prisons by setting up skills acquisition programmes for the inmates.
He called on the NDDC and the Presidential Amnesty Office to start the process of building facilities for the rehabilitation of inmates in the region.
He stated, “You go to a prison yard, a prison that is supposed to be a rehabilitation centre is now a place where hardened criminals are bred. I went to Okaka Prisons in Yenagoa, it was so disappointing that a prison that is less than five years has no sports facilities, no training facilities, bad water, no mattresses and no conducive environment for the inmates to live.
“I feel that the NDDC, which is an interventionist agency should build skills acquisition centres in the prisons. The IYC has contributed its own quota. We have given them food, we have donated sports facilities such as table tennis, football and soon, we will equip barbers shops.”