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The Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Saturday, said it was shocked at the attempts by the Bayelsa State Government to take credit for roads the commission was undertaking in different parts of he state.
The Acting Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, NDDC, Mrs. Ibim Semenitari, said contrary to the claims of the state government, the commission commenced repairs and rehabilitation of 14 roads in the state including the capital, Yenagoa.
Semenitari in a statement signed by her Special Adviser, Media and Communication, Bekee Anyalewechi, said she was reacting to claims by the state Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Mr. Jonathan Obuebite.
Obuebite reportedly said on a live radio programme in Yenagoa that the ongoing emergency repairs on roads in the state were the handiwork of the state government.
But Semenitari flayed the claims and explained that the projects, which covered NDDC’s nine mandate states, were initiated and being executed by the commission.
She wondered why instead of commending the interventionist agency for its bold step to bring a huge relief to the suffering people of the state, the government resorted in turning the truth head-down.
“Such deliberate falsehood erodes public trust in authorities”, the NDDC boss said adding that the emergency work was designed to relieve the government of some infrastructural burden.
Semenitari said the commission had expected that the Government of Bayelsa State would, in best practice, emulate its Cross River and Akwa Ibom states counterparts in commending the NDDC.
“Or, where it lacked the courage to attribute credit to NDDC, would keep quiet than spreading misinformation”, she said.
She expressed disbelief that the government, though knew the truth, chose to hide it from the public noting “that such style of governance erodes confidence in government and ridicules the tenets of probity”.
She said: “NDDC saw gaps in road infrastructure across its nine mandate states and the urgent need to intervene and after a management meeting, decided to act as to procure relief to motorists and other road users.
“So the option of emergency road repairs came handy as it would afford immediate remedial solutions, relieve states of financial burden and enhance inter and intra-city communications.
“Under this intervention, hitherto impassable roads have become usable routes thereby boosting economic activity and improving livelihood of the people.”
The commission listed the 14 roads in which it was working on in the state as the Oporuma-Sabageria-Polaku road in Opokuma local government; Odi-Trofani road; Otiotio Road, Yenagoa; DooGood Street, Yenagoa; Goodnews Street, Azikoro, Yenagoa; Shepherd Vine Road, also in Yenagoa.
Others in Yenagoa are Capt. Ayeni Street; Saptex Road, Yenizue-Epie; INEC Road, Kpansia; Jasmine Suite Road, Kpansia; Erepa Road ; and NIIT Road, Dimrose-Green; Villa-Custom Link Roads 1 & 2, Biogbolo; and Tolda Road, Ekeki.
“While we are not engaging the Bayelsa State Government in any verbal war, it is necessary to leave the public with the correct information because it is critical for good governance and sustainable development.”