Suspected thugs disrupted a press conference by Joy Nunieh, former acting managing director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), on Friday.
Akpabio and Nunieh had appeared before a senate ad hoc panel investigating the alleged mismanagement of N40 billion by the interim management committee (IMC) of the NDDC.
At the hearing, Akpabio said he did not know the expenditure of the NDDC under Nunieh because she refused to give him briefings.
“She does not pick my calls until one day she came to my house and told me I have five minutes,” the minister told the senators.
The former minority leader reportedly pushed for the sack of Nunieh.
After the hearing, the minister, flanked by his aides and supporters, spoke with journalists. He denied that he got a N300 million fencing contract from the commission, an allegation levelled against him by Peter Nwaoboshi, chairman of the senate committee on NDDC.
After Akpabio left, Nunieh also spoke with journalists.
She alleged that while she was NDDC acting MD, Akpabio wanted her to take “illegal actions”.
“I challenge him to say that he did not give me any oath on the certificate of no objection that he has. I’m proud and I must encourage all Nigerians that we must save this country,” Nunieh said.
“He said I did not bring money and that I was talking to ministers against his presidential ambition. He gave me a list of people to employ, I said I will not employ them because the youths in our zone have not gotten jobs.”
While she was still speaking, the thugs disrupted the conference and this made journalists flee to safety.