By Jimitota ONOYUME
ONE of the frontline Commanders of the Movement for the Emancipation of Niger Delta and head of the dreaded Outlaws, a cult group in Rivers state, Soboma George and twenty otherÂ militants Thursday surrendered theirÂ arms at a ceremony that could betterÂ be described as discreet and quietÂ inÂ Port Harcourt.
On hand to receive the reformed militantsÂ at the SSS office in Port Harcourt were some members of the Presidential amnesty implementation committee led by Air Vice Marshall, Lucky Ararile and the Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta, Mr Timi Alaibe.Some of the items surrendered includedÂ 24 AK 47, 4 General purpose machine guns, 1 machine gun, 7 pump action andÂ etc.
In his brief comment, Soboma George said he had to embrace the amnesty for peace to reign in the region.
While urging the federal government to take practical steps towards development of the region he also spoke against the planned demolition of water fronts in Port Harcourt by the Rivers state government.
An elated Timi Alaibe hailed the decision of the reformed militants to embrace the amnesty just as he assured that the federal government would live up its promises to address challenges in the region.
His words,â€œWe have always said that those who come forth are courageous. You can now agitate on the path of non-violence.
There are communities in the Niger Delta that have agitated non-violently without carrying arms and they have gotten what they wantâ€ on his part, Air Vice Marshall, Lucky Ararile, also praised the reformed militants for the action they took, assuring that they would be issued identification cards to cover them from harassment from security quarters in the future.
This development has raised the number of militants that have embraced the amnesty in the state. Among them is Osama Bin Laden who says he should now be addressed as brother Solomon.