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High Court Bars NDDC Chiefs From Running Agency

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A Federal High Court in Abuja has restrained the Interim Management Commitee of the Niger Delta Development Commission,( NDDC) led by Professor Kemebradikumo Pondei, from performing the functions of the board.

The court presided by Justice Anmed Mohammed , further granted leave to the applicant, Incorporated Trustees of Forum For Accountability and Good Governance (FAAG) to apply for judicial review for an order of mandamus compelling the Independent Corrupt practices and Other Related Offences Commission ( ICPC) to investigate the Minister of the Niger Delta Godswill Akpabio and members of the board over allegations of N3billion contract fraud.

Justice Mohammed also granted leave to the applicant to apply for judicial review of the power of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria or the Minister of the Niger Delta to appoint Professor Pondei, Dr Cairo Ojougboh, Caroline Nagbo and others in an interim capacity as members of the NDDC Board.

The orders contained in an enrolled order of the court dated November 5,2020 restrained members of the interim board from performing the functions of the board pending the hearing and determination of the motion fixed for December 8.

The applicant had requested that the most senior civil servant of the commission be appointed while praying that the suspended officers be stopped from accessing the commissions offices and files as they could tamper with evidence that could be used by the ICPC in its probe.

By the order of the court, members of the NDDC Board are restrained from performing the functions of the Board pending the hearing and determination of the Motion on Notice which is fixed for December 8, 2020.

Parties joined in the suit are: the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice Abubakar Malami; the Senate, Godswill Akpabio; Professor Pondei and Dr Ojougboh, Dr Nunieh, Caroline Nagbo, Cecilia Bukola Akintomide and the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC).

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