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By Desmond Ejibas

The Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) said it spent about N22 billion in March and April to settle outstanding debts owed contractors and vendors.

NDDC’s Manager of Corporate Affairs, Charles Odili, gave the clarification in Port Harcourt on Thursday, while reacting to an online publication that the commission ‘squandered’ over N200 billion in two months.

“The online publication accused the Interim Management Committee (IMC) of squandering N200 billion on payments for fake contracts in the past two months.

“This story is classical fake news, as the commission has not paid such amount, even for genuine contracts, not to talk of fake ones.

“The total payments made by the IMC in the past two months is about N22 billion,” he said.

Odili described the allegation of financial misappropriation by the IMC as the handiwork of mischief makers.

“The payments was made to vendors and suppliers like hotels, and contractors, especially those owed N50 million and below.

“The total funds available to the commission in the past three months is N33 billion, a rather distant cry from the humongous amount quoted by the report.

“It beats the imagination where these merchants of falsehood cooked their figures from, since the commission cannot pay what it does not have,” he added.

The spokesman said,, NDDC was not against scrutiny by the media, but rather abhorred ‘fake news’ peddled by some online publications on the activities of the commission.

He urged the public to ignore such reports in the future.

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