EKET COMMUNITY LEADER DRAGS FG TO COURT OVER LOPSIDED APPOINTMENTS IN NDDC BOARD

A Non-Governmental Organisation, Community Watch of Nigeria, has prayed a Federal High Court for an order restraining the Federal Government from appointing any other person representing any state of the Niger Delta other than that from Delta State as Chairman of Governing Board of the Niger Delta Development Commission.

Chief Samingo Etukakpan, President of CWN, made the prayer in an origination summons with file number FHC/ABJ/CS/1062/201.
Etukakpan, an indigene of Afacha in Eket Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State, instituted the suit on September 12 pursuant to Sections 6 (1) (2) (3) (6) (b), 272 of the 1999 Constitution and made it available to newsmen on Sunday in Abuja.

The respondents are President Muhammadu Buhari, President of the Senate, Speaker of the House of Representatives and the Attorney-General of the Federation.
Others are NDDC, Dr. Pius Odudu, Otobong Edem, Maxwell Okoh and Dr. Agwagaga Enyia.

Etukakpan also prayed for an order of injunction restraining the first respondent (Buhari) from appointing any other person from Akwa Ibom State other than that from Eket Local Government Area as Executive Director Finance and Administration in the fifth respondent.

The plaintiff is also seeking an order restraining both the President of the Senate and Speaker of the House of Representatives from receiving nomination from the first respondent (Buhari) with a view to screening and confirming the appointment of person representing any state of the Niger Delta other than from Delta State as chairman of the governing board of NDDC.

The suit further seeks an order restraining both the President of the Senate and Speaker House of Representatives from receiving nomination from the first respondent (Buhari) with a view to screening and confirming the appointment of person from Akwa Ibom State other than from Eket as Executive Director Finance and Administration in NDDC.

Etukakpan is also seeking an order of the court to restrain the ninth respondent (Enyia) from handing over the fifth respondent (NDDC) to any of the most senior directors in the fifth respondent (NDDC) in line with the presidential order of August 27.

The suit is seeking an order to nullify and set aside the appointment of the sixth respondent (Odubu) as chairman representing Edo State on NDDC board as such was not in conformity with the provision of NDDC Act, 2010.

Similarly, the plaintiff seeks an order nullifying and setting aside the appointment of the seventh respondent (Ndem), a representative of Akwa Ibom State, as Executive Director Project, as, according to him, the action does not conform to any provisions of NDDC Act, 2010.

The suit is seeking an order mandating the first respondent (Buhari) to appoint any qualified indigene of Delta State as chairman of the governing board of NDDC.
In the same vein, the suit is asking of an order to mandate the first respondent (Buhari) to appoint any qualified indigene of Eket Local Government Area in Akwa Ibom State as Executive Director of Finance and Administration in NDDC among others.

In an affidavit deposed to by the plaintiff, he alleged that the first respondent (Buhari) was in breach of the NDDC Act, 2010 by some of his recent appointments to the board of the commission.

He said: “That I know that the first respondent has on August 27, appointed and nominated persons to be appointed as members of the board of the fifth respondent (NDDC).
“That I know as a fact that in selecting the persons to form the board of the fifth respondent (NDDC), the first respondent (Buhari) is to be guided by NDDC Act, 2010.”
NAN reports that the plaintiff had outlined six key issues for determination and 18 consequential reliefs to be decided.

Also, the plaintiff had through his counsel, Chief S. M. Essienekak, accompanied the originating summons with a motion.

The motion is seeking an interlocutory injunction restraining the President of the Senate and Speaker, House of Representatives and their officials from receiving from Buhari names of nominees, including those of Odubu, Ndem and Okoh for screening and confirmation of appointment into NDDC Board pending the determination of the substantive suit.

The suit is yet to be assigned to any judge by the Chief Judge of the court

Recollect that, Akwa Ibom State have not held the position of Executive Director Finance since the inception of the commission

NAN

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