DSS INVITES NDDC COVID-19 PALLIATIVE COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN OVER 6.25BIL FRAUD ALLEGATION AGAINST NDDC CHAIRMAN

By Mike Odiegwu, Port Harcourt

The Department of State Security (DSS) has invited and quizzed Chairman, Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) COVID-19 Palliative Distribution Committee, High Chief Sobomabo Jackrich.

It was gathered Jackrich’s invitation was following a petition he sent to the National Assembly accusing the Interim Management Committee (IMC) of NDDC of diverting N6.25bn palliatives for Niger Delta region approved by President Muhammadu Buhari.

Jackrich, who confirmed the development, said the IMC petitioned the DSS accusing him of using the NDDC letterhead in the petition he sent to the National Assembly.

He said: “I was invited August 24 to meet with the State Director of the DSS in Rivers state. The invitation, which came through a phone call from an operative from the Rivers State Command was said to be in connection with a petition from the Niger Delta Development Commission

“The NDDC accused me, an appointee of the commission of using the letterhead of the NDDC to petition the National Assembly against the Interim Management Committee of the NDDC.

“For the avoidance of doubt and as a responsible citizen, I decided to honour the said invitation on August 25, 2020.

“It is important to note that I had in my capacity as Chairman of NDDC COVID-19 Palliatives Distribution Committee petitioned the National Assembly to investigate the alleged diversion and misappropriation of N6.25bn palliatives funds approved by President Muhammadu Buhari.

“I alleged in the petitions to both the Senate and the House of Representatives that the NDDC Interim Management Committee IMC led by Prof. Daniel Pondei has misappropriated the money undeniably”.

Jackrich, however, said the DSS officials were professional while interrogating him as they gave him fair hearing.

He alleged action of the IMC was designed to compromise his petition, which he said was pending before the National Assembly and other agencies.

He insisted no amount of intimidation by the IMC would stop his moves and desire to secure justice for the people of the Niger Delta.

He said: “The DSS in their wisdom acting on the said petition by the IMC invited me and their engagement with me was highly professional as they fairly heard me.

“However, these moves by the IMC is aimed at using state institutions and apparatuses to both circumvent and compromise the process over the petition which is yet pending before the National Assembly and other relevant agencies.

“The IMC seeks to intimidate me from further insistence on justice in the matter knowing that the issues I raised in the petition against them are incontrovertible and undeniable.

“Hence they resorted to seeking to strangely criminalizing my use of the Commission’s Letterhead without minding that I am an appointee of the Commission and my appointment is still subsisting with my appointment letter still very much alive.”

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