Joy Nunieh, former acting managing director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), says she slappped Godswill Akpabio, minister of Niger Delta affairs, for sexually harassing her.
Speaking on Monday, during an interview on Arise TV, Nunieh said the incident happened at the minister’s guest house in Abuja.
She said her reaction to the alleged harassment proved her intolerance for “nonsense” as a woman from Rivers state.
“Why did he not tell Nigerians that I slapped him in his guest house at Apo? I am the only woman that slapped Akpabio. He thought he could come up on me. He tried to harass me sexually,” she said.
“I slapped him. He tried to come on me. I am an Ogoni woman and nobody jokes with us. I showed Akpabio that Rivers women do not tolerate nonsense.”
The former NDDC MD also accused Akpabio of trying to inflate the NDDC budget.
She said the minister directed her to include some projects from the refugee commission in the budget of the NDDC.
“Akpabio wrote me to put a list of projects from the refugee commission in the budget of NDDC. Refugee commission is another federal government commission for IDPs,” she said.
“How do you tell me to put some of their projects in the NDDC budget when we have so many things to do in the Niger Delta? How do you explain that?”
Nunieh and Akpabio have made allegations against each other following the activities of the senate ad hoc panel investigating the alleged mismanagement of N40 billion by the interim management committee (IMC) of the NDDC.
Akpabio had told the panel that he knew nothing about the expenditure of the NDDC under Nunieh because she refused to give him briefings.
But Nunieh alleged that the minister engineered her removal for failing to follow his orders.
“When we first came to the NDDC, on the day of going for the inauguration, he told me in the car that Madam MD, If you don’t do what I say, the same pen which I use to sign your letter, it will be the same pen I will use to remove you,” she had said.
Nunieh had also alleged that Akpabio asked her to change the dollars in the NDDC account; sack the head of the legal team who is from the north; remove all directors who refused to follow his instructions and also to implicate Peter Nwaoboshi, chairman of the senate committee on NDDC
The Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio, has reacted to the allegations made against him by Joy Nunieh, a former Acting Managing Director of Interim Management Committee of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC.
Nunieh recently made some damning revelations about the Minister and former Governor of Akwa Ibom State on his handling of the Ministry.
Addressing the press after she appeared before Senate adhoc Committee investigating NDDC, Mrs Nunieh recounted her ordeal at the hands of the Minister before she was removed as the NDDC MD.
Among other claims, Mrs. Nunieh said, “Nobody makes any payment in NDDC without Godswill Akpabio’s approval. When we first came, on the day of the inauguration, he said to me in the car, ‘Madam MD, if you don’t do what I say, the same pen with which I used to sign your paper is the same pen I’ll use to remove you.
“He said the first thing I should do when I get to Port Harcourt is to change the dollars in the NDDC account. I was scared to do that and he claimed that I have a poverty mentality that I’m afraid of money. All of you knew that he accused me of refusing to spend money. It is strange today, it’s about money.
“After that, he came to Port Harcourt two days after the inauguration and told me that the first thing I should do was to change the dollars.”
But reacting in a television interview that has gone viral on social media, Akpabio said the former NDDC MD has character problem.
The Minister also charged his interviewer to bring the four husbands of Nunieh, whom she had alllegedly divorced, to the studio to attest to her temperament.
According to him, “I don’t want to discuss her because that’s not the job of a Minister.
“The last MD you mentioned, Joy Nunieh; I wish she can go to hospital, see a doctor take some injections and relax.
“I’m not saying that there’s something wrong with her, but I’m saying there’s something wrong with her temperament. Remember she had about four other husbands that she married.
“You also need to bring all the other former husbands to the studio so that you ask them questions one after the other because it looks like character.
“They will have answers to her problem. Not a professional conduct, is she a professional?
“They will tell you about her characters because what I’m seeing here…if somebody comes up and say something on television channel…then the whole world…Nigerians love bad news and my job is to protect the citizens of the country and the administration of Mr. President .
“I must tell you that even Mr. President, President Buhari was not aware of all these things because I did not want to bother because he will be shocked.”