The Senate committee on ethics, privileges and public petitions has cleared the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Mr Umana Okon Umana, of alleged misappropriation and illegal sack of workers levelled against him.

The committee tagged as baseless the petition in which the allegations were made.

The chairman of the committee, Senator Ayo Akinyelure, who spoke to newsmen in Abuja on Thursday, said the committee had determined that the allegation of misappropriating N480 billion funds of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) levelled against him was false.

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Akinyelure said the committee had established that the former chairman had involved in a lawful plan of ensuring core regional projects were included in the amended NDDC 2021/2022 budget as approved by President Muhammadu Buhari.

He commended the minister for working to ensure the transmission of the NDDC budgets for 2021/2022 and 2023 to the National Assembly for legislative approval.

He also expressed satisfaction with the Minister’s contribution to the efforts to constitute the governing board of the NDDC which is currently undergoing legislative approval at the Senate.

On the alleged sack of 100 workers of the NDDC, the committee noted that there was no evidence that such disengagement had ministerial approval.

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