By Simeon OSAJIE
Stakeholders at the town hall meeting organized by the Social Action in conjunction with the MacArthur Foundation, has tasked Nigerians on effective use of the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act to know the budgetary allocation for the Niger-Delta Development Commission (NDDC) each year by the federal government.
The demand was contained in the communiques issued at the end of the town hall meeting with stakeholders in Benin City, Edo State capital.
The communique read that since the inception of the NDDC 21 years ago, its budgetary allocations have been shredded in secrecy, adding that with the availability of the FOI Act and other legal means, citizens can ask the commission to make public its yearly budgetary allocations.
“For the NDDC to have its impacts, there should be active participation among host communities, traditional rulers and other stakeholders in project planning, monitoring and evaluations.
“The reasons most of the commission’s projects are poorly executed is because professionals are not involved in the execution processes, therefore, professionals should be engaged to undertake projects in their specialized area of disciplines.
“Persons with disabilities should be included in planning and budgeting process of the NDDC Projects, in line with the global best practices.”
The communique urther warned that NDDC projects should not be used as political patronage but that those qualified to undertake projects should be given with the intention of executing it for the well-being of all.