A civil society organisation, Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEDAP) has dragged the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio, to court, challenging his to constitute an interim management committee to run the affairs of the Niger Delta Development Commission.
LEDAP in the suit its filed alongside some indigenes of the Niger Delta before the Federal High Court in Abuja is seeking an order nullifying the purported appointments of the acting Managing Director and Executive Directors for NDDC.
Akpabio had told reporters in Abuja last week that the interim committee was to prepare ground for the new Board and supervise the forensic audit which the President had ordered two weeks ago.
Apart from LEDAP other plaintiffs in the suit are: Iruo Onoruvwe, Anatole Osuji, and Walter Abere.
Other defendants aside the Minister and the NDDC are Dr Gbene Joi Nunieh, Dr Cairo Ojougboh, and Chief Ibanga Basset Etang.
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In the suit, filed by the Executive Director of LEDAP, Chino Obiagwu SAN, the plaintiff are seeking the following reliefs:
A declaration that the purported appointment by the first defendant of three-man interim management for the second defendant is contrary to sections 2, 10, and 12 of the NDDC Act 6 2000(as amended)
A declaration that the purported appointment by the first defendant of the third defendant as the Managing Director of the second defendant, the fourth as Executive Director, Projects, and the fifth defendant as Executive Director, Finance and Administration of the second defendant are contrary to the provisions of section 12(1)c of the NDCC Act as amended, which provides that the Managing Director and two executive directors of the second defendant shall be appointed by the President, Commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces and confirmed by the Senate in consultation with the House of Representatives.
A declaration that by virtue of Section 12(2) of the second defendant of the NDDC Act,the Managing Director of the second defendant performs his functions under the general direction of the board of the second defendant.
A declaration that the first defendant cannot validly appoint the 3rd-5th defendants as acting Managing Director; and Executive Directors of the second defendant while the list of nominated members of board of the second defendant submitted by the President, pursuant to sections 2, 10, and 12 of the NDDC Act 2000 to the National Assembly is pending the approval of of the Senate.
An order nullifying the purported appointments of the 3rd-5th defendants as acting Managing Director and Executive Directors of the second defendant;
An order restraining the second defendant and its management from handing over, and, or permitting the 3rd-5th defendants to assume the office of the Managing Director and Executive Directors of the second defendant;
An order restraining the first defendant by himself or anyhow whatsoever from interfering in the affairs of the second defendant in manner inconsistent with the provisions of the NDDC Act.
No date has been fixed for the hearing of the suit, as it yet to be assigned to a judge.