The Federal Government has promised a fair deal for Niger Delta ex-militants in an announced amnesty programme.
It has pointed out that the present peace in the region should not be toyed with, stressing that it must be sustained by all stakeholders.
The government denied that a prominent ex-militant leader (name withheld) was paid a huge amount of money by one of the governorship candidates to influence the re-run governorship election in Bayelsa state.
Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta Amnesty Programme, Brigadier General Paul Boroh, denied the allegation yesterday, in Port Harcourt.
RN gathered that the Amnesty payment to ex-militants, which was usually made through the banks, was paid directly to the ex-agitators. But recently the banks have refused paying them after an attack in which the bank’s facilities were allegedly damaged by some angry ex-militants.
Addressing newsmen in Port Harcourt, Boroh said: “I am not aware that a major ex-militant leader was paid a huge amount of money by a governorship candidate. What I do know is that this exercise became necessary when the banks refused to pay those captured in the amnesty programme… The exercise is just for a period. Immediately after this period, the banking system will continue”.
According to him, “This exercise will continue from the banks because there were some ambiguities. The bankers advised that they will not allow their premises to be used; that the ex-agitators damaged their bank facilities. This exercise will allow for effective biometric verification and to ensure that their names tally with the biometric
numbers. This is to ensure credibility and sustainability,” Boroh said.
Boroh noted that the amnesty programme had sustained peace enjoyed in the region, adding that there were plans to partner with other stakeholders to maintain the vision of the programme.
“The Amnesty programme is to sustain peace in Niger Delta. To sustain the peace which ex-agitators have been sustaining. The Amnesty programme is to ensure total peace, total security, training for the ex-agitators, empowerment for them, employment, then engagement and later reintegration, to allow for development.
“I want to continue to sustain that peace in order to allow for NDDC, Niger Delta Ministry, and governors in the Niger Delta region to continue their work; and for the Ministry of Agriculture to continue their work in boosting Agriculture in the Niger Delta. We are in partnership with other stakeholders and international bodies to achieve our vision”.
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