THe Concerned Ndokwa Patriots has dragged President Muhammadu Buhari before the Federal High Court in Asaba, Delta State over the exclusion of indigenes of Ndokwa from the board of the Niger Delta Development Commission.
The CNP urged the court to mandate the President to appoint an Ndokwa person into the board.
Joined in suit were the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Abubarkar Malami; President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki; the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara; and three others.
The CNP pleaded with the court to restrain the National Assembly from screening and confirming the nominees into the board. It prayed the court to prevent the president from swearing them in as board members of the commission, except an Ndokwa man is appointed into the board.
The president had on July 20, 2016 published the list of eight nominees for appointment into the board of the commission without considering any Ndokwa/Ukwuani person.
Armed with relevant sections of the 1999 constitution on human right violation, the group in suit no. FHC/ASB/CS/47/2016, sought to know why Ndokwa/Ukwuani indigene has not been appointed since the commission was established in June 5, 2000.
It sought the order of court to direct the 1st respondent (Buhari) to immediately appoint an indigene of the locality in the proposed 5th board of the commission.
“A declaration that the non-inclusion of any indigene of Ndokwa/Ukwuani ethic group as members of the 5th governing board of the NDDC pursuant to section 2(1)(b)(v) and 2(2)(a)(b) of the NDDC Act of 12th July, 2000, amounts to discrimination against indigenes of Ndokwa/Ukwuani ethnic group in Delta state” the suit read.
The applicant counsel, A.C. Oluiji, in the suit argued that the ethnic nationality, has for decades been responsible for 12% of the total oil and gas being explored in the Niger Delta region and host to the largest oil and gas recycling plant in the whole of West Africa.
He said the recycling plant has been nicknamed Kwale/Okpai Gas Plant, being operated by the Nigerian Agip Oil Company and it supplies electricity to 14 states in Nigeria.