Niger Delta Ministry Commends NDDC for Embracing Development Partners

The Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs has commended the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, for initiating platforms for collaborative engagements with development partners, donor agencies and stakeholders towards speedy development of the Niger Delta region. Speaking during a one-day NDDC Policy Dialogue with Development Partners at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs, Dr Shuaib Belgore, said that the forum presented an opportunity to expand formal interaction with development agencies.

He stated: “The aim of this forum, aptly captured in the theme: ‘Deepening Governance through Transparency and Value-Added Partnership’ is to brainstorm on the shared mandates of the Ministry and the NDDC with you, our development partners and the private sector, on how best to collaborate and promote greater synergy for enhanced result in the overall development of the region.”

Declaring the Policy Dialogue open, the Permanent Secretary said that engagement with partners and stakeholders was one of the many new strategies designed by the current management in NDDC and the ministry to fast-track the development of the Niger Delta region.

Belgore said that the Ogbia-Nembe Road, which was jointly funded by Shell Petroleum Development Company, SPDC, and the NDDC, stood out as an example of what could be achieved through partnerships.

Speaking earlier, the NDDC Managing Director, Dr. Samuel Ogbuku, stated that the Commission remained the major vehicle for the development of the Niger Delta region.


He said: “We are here to appeal to you to consider the Niger Delta as your own. For donor agencies, we say, support us. For the development partners, we say join us to complete ongoing major projects. NDDC alone cannot develop the Niger Delta. We need more funding. We need support.”

The Managing Director observed: “We have started engagement with key stakeholders, such as the oil companies who contribute three per cent of their operational budget to the Commission; the state governments, traditional rulers, Civil Society Groups, youth organisations and contractors.” 

Ogbuku said that the NDDC would be banking on multinational corporations such as Shell, Chevron, ExxonMobil and Total to collaborate with the NDDC in executing legacy projects such as the Warri-Escravos Road.

The NDDC boss said that the management had sought to expand the development scope in the region through the involvement of private sector partners. According to him, “through this policy dialogue, NDDC seeks to comprehensively map donor interventions and compile data on projects in the Niger Delta that complement the mandate of NDDC and establish a coordination framework by identifying any gaps and ensuring harmonization and alignment.”

Earlier, the NDDC Executive Director, Projects, Mr. Charles Ogunmola, in his opening remarks, stressed the need for joint efforts in developing the Niger Delta, noting that it would be difficult to tackle the challenges of underdevelopment alone.

Ogunmola said: “The scale of infrastructural deficiency and human development gap in the Niger Delta is enormous. We realize that we cannot do this alone. So, we decided to look at other ways to address the deficiencies. This is next in the series of meetings we will have with partners, to help us drive our agenda for the Niger Delta. On coming on board, we resolved that we must make a difference. I enjoin you to listen, let us reason together as you figure out how you want to partner with us in the great task ahead.”

In a lead presentation, entitled: “A Sea of Opportunities in the Niger Delta Region,” the Chairman, NDDC-PPP Committee, Engr. Emmanuel Audu-Ohwavborua, remarked that inadequate funding was a major challenge for the Commission. He noted that the poor funding was emanating from inconsistent statutory contributions from the Federal Government, and failure of some Oil and Gas Companies operating within the region to remit their contributions in line with the provisions of the NDDC Act.


Ibitoye Abosede, Ph.D.

Director, Corporate Affairs

July 6, 2023.

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