By Eseoghene Emuke

The Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) has challenged the new board of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) to immediately hit the ground running in the development of the Niger Delta towards tackling the age-long physical infrastructural and environmental challenges facing the people of the region.

IYC, an umbrella body for Ijaw youths worldwide, further urged the new board not to repeat mistakes of their predecessors in meeting with the developmental yearning of the people of the region.

In a statement on Wednesday signed by its president, Barr. Eric Omare, IYC particularly congratulated Olorogun Bernard Okumagba and Comrade Maxwell Oko on their appointment as Managing Director and Executive Director, Finance and Administration of NDDC respectively.

While describing the appointment of Okumagba and Oko as well deserved, Omare stated that the appointees have distinguished themselves in their private and public life the pride of the Niger Delta people in the past.

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The statement noted that Comrade Oko, who previously served as a former chairman of the IYC, central zone, is a product of the Niger Delta struggle and had been at the forefront of the Niger Delta agitation over the years for better development.

According to the statement, IYC said, “We express our appreciation to President Buhari for appointing proven technocrats in Okumagba and Oko into the management committee of the NDDC and it is our expectation that they would bring their wealth of experience to bear in the discharge of their duties.

“However, the IYC call on Okumagba and Oko to face the challenges of developing the Niger Delta region especially tackling the physical infrastructural and environmental challenges facing the region.

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“They must not commit the mistake of their predecessors who see the NDDC as a stepping stone to the Governorship of their states.

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“The new NDDC management must keep politics aside and face the developmental challenges of the Niger Delta region.

“We call on all stakeholders in the region to give the new board the required support to achieve their mandate.”


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