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N-Delta ministry begins issuance of biometric forms to ex-militants

By Samuel Oyadongha
Yenagoa—The Niger Delta Ministry yesterday in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, commenced the issuance of biometric forms to ex-militants for them to indicate the type of skill training they intended to acquire.

This comes as the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN), Bayelsa chapter, has set up a committee known as PFN Amnesty Regeneration and Re-integration  Committee to play spiritual role in the successful implementation of the programme.

Dr. Samson Onwumere, who  disclosed this when he led some officials of the ministry to intimate the Secretary to Bayelsa State Government, Gideon Ekeuwei, on the Federal Government’s next line of action, which is the issuance of the data capturing form for repentant militants to specify their choice of specialization for the training to commence.

He noted that the training for the repentant militants would include oil and gas, information and communication technology (ICT), maritime industry, artisanship, such as electrical and electronic maintenance engineering.

He listed other fields of endeavour to include agriculture, tourism, carpentry, joinery building and construction.
According to him, the training will last for a period of six months, while those in the oil and gas will be more than that period.

Onwumere noted that if the repentant militants acquired the skills, they would be self-sufficient for the rest of their lives.

Receiving the delegation, the Secretary to the State Government, Gideon Ekeuwei, expressed optimism that amnesty programme of Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration (DDR) will succeed, as every thing was on course for its full implementation.

He noted that the insinuation in some quarters that the entire programme will fail was uncalled for, adding that the federal government was committed to its full implementation.

“This is the second team from the Niger Delta Ministry that has visited the state on the rehabilitation process.

“Before the President made the pronouncement of amnesty for Niger Delta militants, there was wide consultation on how the entire programme would be handled, therefore, it will never fail,” he said.

Onwumere urged militants who were yet to drop their arms to do so in their own interest.
According to him, other organs of the federal government are also putting in their best for the proper implementation of the programme.

He assured that the state government will do her best to assist to ensure its success, noting that
Nigeria had been involved in some DDR programmes across Africa and, as such, has the wherewithal to handle the amnesty programme.

He, however, suggested that before the commencement of the programme, they should put into consideration the psychological training for their reorientation involving councillors and medical doctors for at least one month.
State Coordinator of the amnesty implementation committee, Rev, Obegha Oworibo, noted that the committee had got some medical doctors from the Ministry of Health and some councillors for the commencement of the training.

He also hinted that the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria, Bayelsa chapter, had showed interest in the DDR  programme and had gone ahead to set up a committee, known as PFN Amnesty Regeneration and Re-integration  Committee, to play spiritual role in the successful implementation of the programme.


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