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ESI disowns Pointblank’s report on Judith Amaechi’s NDDC link

The Empowerment Support Initiative, ESI, has described as untrue and “libelous” a report by Pointblank News, linking of Transportation‘s wife, to N48bn contract scam from Niger Commission, NDDC.

The report by Pointblank online medium was captioned: HOW AMAECHI’S WIFE LOOTED N48 BILLION FROM NDDC, MINISTER BEGS FOR SOFT LANDING” and dated 6th May, 2021.

Reacting to the development, the Admin/Public Relations Manager, ESI, Roland Evukowhiroro, described the said publication as “spiteful, malicious, and at any rate, a figment of the imagination of the faceless reporter calculated to tarnish the hard-earned reputation and goodwill of our organization which over the years has acquitted itself creditably in developing and improving the human capital of thousands of Niger Delta Youths, in line with the vision of its Founder.”

Evukowhiroro, setting the records straight explained that “ESI was founded as a Non-Governmental Organisation on October 16, 2008, by the former First Lady of Rivers State, Dame Judith Amaechi, to vigorously pursue the development and welfare of indigent women, children and youth in the society as well as provide practical technical assistance and support to the socially and economically alienated members of the society through its skills acquisition, technical, medical and public awareness campaign programs.

“The ESI was conceptualised to be a leading organisation that supports quality, social, economic, and productive life amongst women, youth, and children. Its vision is to establish a multi-dimensional scheme that addresses and mitigates the challenges associated with poverty, diseases, illiteracy, violence, and others. And this, it has achieved in over one decade through productive partnerships with both and private agencies.”

He described the medium as being notorious for carrying out “sensationalist hatchet job on well-known public figures and/or organizations with towering reputations for his paymasters, in the guise of “investigative .

“Many Nigerians would recall that the Amaechis are not his first targets as he has pulled similar stunts on several other prominent personalities including the Vice President of Nigeria, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo.

“Consequently, we urge members of the public and our local and international partners to discountenance the report in its entirety as it is bereft of any truth. We have since briefed our Legal Counsel and subject to their professional advice, we shall be taking the appropriate legal steps in due course as the circumstances may warrant,” Evukowhiroro said.

The full statement reads below:

STATEMENT OF EMPOWERMENT SUPPORT INITIATIVE (ESI) ON LIBELOUS ONLINE PUBLICATION AGAINST IT, BY POINTBLANK NEWS.COM:

Our attention has been drawn to a news report credited to an online news platform, www.pointblanknews.com under the caption: “HOW AMAECHI’S WIFE LOOTED N48 BILLION FROM NDDC, MINISTER BEGS FOR SOFT LANDING” and dated 6th May, 2021.

In the said poorly-written news report which was shared on the official handle of one Jackson Ude, who doubles as the Publisher of the platform, the Empowerment Support Initiative (“ESI”) was portrayed to be involved in a contract scandal by purportedly colluding with the former Managing Director of the (NDDC), Prof. Nelson Brambaifa, through its Founder, and former First Lady of Rivers State, Dame Judith Amaechi, to curry contracts worth a whopping 70 Billion Naira from the NDDC, purportedly to train Niger Deltans in soap making, tailoring and sundry crafts and skills.

For the avoidance of doubt, the ESI wishes to state that the said publication is spiteful, malicious, and at any rate, a figment of the imagination of the faceless reporter calculated to tarnish the hard-earned reputation and goodwill of our organization which over the years has acquitted itself creditably in developing and improving the human capital of thousands of Niger Delta Youths, in line with the vision of its Founder.

For the record, ESI was founded as a Non-Governmental Organization in October 16, 2008, by the former First Lady of Rivers State, Dame Judith Amaechi, to vigorously pursue the development and welfare of indigent women, children and youth in the society as well as provide practical technical assistance and support to the socially and economically alienated members of the society through its skills acquisition, technical, medical and public awareness campaign programs.

The ESI was conceptualized to be a leading organization that supports quality, social, economic and productive life amongst the women, youth and children. Its vision is to establish a multi-dimensional scheme that addresses and mitigates the challenges associated with poverty, diseases, illiteracy, violence and others. And this, it has achieved in over one decade through productive partnerships with both government and private agencies.

Throughout its operative years, the ESI has anchored its programmes and activities on sound values of integrity and honesty with total abhorrence for all manner of sharp practices whether in dealing with her local public and private sector partners, or international donor organizations. All of these have no doubt aggregated to earn it an iron clad reputation and goodwill in the humanitarian sphere as vindicated in the mutually-beneficial relationship it has enjoyed with leading organizations such as the SPDC and other A-rated public and private sector interests even before its partnership with the NDDC which began in 2012.

Preliminary background checks reveal that the said Jackson Ude; the publisher of the yellow platform─Pointblanknews is a notorious clout chaser, pathological liar and shameless “gun-for-hire” whose stock in trade is to carry out sensationalist hatchet job on well-known public figures and/or organizations with towering reputations for his paymasters, in the guise of “investigative journalism”.

Many Nigerians would recall that the Amaechis are not his first targets as he has pulled similar stunts on several other prominent personalities including the Vice President of Nigeria, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, SAN. And we are aware that more of these sponsored scandalous attacks will surface in coming days.

ESI is a corporate entity with an enviable goal and objective that does not meddle in politics, save to the extent permitted or necessitated by its overall objective of capacity-building and human capital development in the Niger-Delta region, and Nigeria at large, and would not want to be used as a fodder for settlement of political scores by fifth columnists.

Consequently, we urge members of the public and our local and international partners to discountenance the report in its entirety as it is bereft of any truth. We have since briefed our Legal Counsel and subject to their professional advice, we shall be taking the appropriate legal steps in due course as the circumstances may warrant.

Signed:

Roland Evukowhiroro
Admin/Public Relations Manager, ESI

For: EMPOWERMENT SUPPORT INITIATIVE, ESI

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