The Minister, Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs (MNDA), Senator Godswill Akpabio, has reiterated the Federal Government’s commitment in ensuring that peace and security is maintained in the Niger Delta region.
According to a statement by the Director Press and Public Relations MNDA, Deworitshe Patricia, the Minister stated this when he received in audience the Ambassador of the United States of America to Nigeria, Her Excellency, Ambassador Marybeth Leonard, who was on a courtesy visit to his office in Abuja.
The Minister while addressing his guests, said the Ministry is engaging stakeholders and youths of the region through Community Development Education and Empowerment programmes geared towards promoting the well being of the people and sustenance of peace and development in the region.
“As at today, there are very difficult challenges in the Niger Delta region but the Niger Delta region is the most peaceful, the Ministry is mandated by the President to work very hard to ensure that peace remains in the region.
He said, inauguration of the Forensic Auditors propelled contractors who had abandoned projects in the region to quickly mobilize and go back to site, With over 75 completed road construction projects and others, awaiting commissioning.
Akpabio further stated that, to transform the Niger Delta region, United States’ assistance is needed, informing the Ambassador that a Web- Based Monitoring System has recently been developed by the Ministry to ensure that infrastructure provided by International Oil Companies (IOCs), Donor Agencies and other development partners are projects needed by the people.
He solicited the assistance of the U.S. in the area of the two master Plans (Ministry’s Regional Plan and the NDDC Action Plan for development of the Niger Delta Region) in order to facilitate the achievement of a harmonized Niger Delta Master Plan.
The US Ambassador while appreciating the various areas of endeavors of the Ministry as outlined by the Ministry, the Ambassador noted that she is aware that the Ministry had come up with a road map that was supposed to guide the development activities of the Ministry for 2020 which unfortunately was disrupted by the outbreak of the Global Pandemic of Covid-19.
“Considering the issue of security challenges within the region, we look forward to the revised timetable of activities of the Ministry and the NDDC Roadmap becoming a reality in reaching all important goals of development and the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) passed into law for the benefit of the population in the Niger Delta region”, she added.