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Poor funding’ll mar amnesty, PPA boss warns

The Federal Government has been warned against inadequate funding of the amnesty programme for repentant Niger Delta militants.

The national chairman of the Progressive Peoples Alliance, Mr Lawrence Esin, who made the call against the backdrop of the abandonment of camp by  former militants in Ondo State on the grounds  of non-payment of their allowances and the eviction of their colleagues in Edo State, said doing otherwise would put the initiative to restore peace in the oil region at risk.

Esin stated that on no account should the gains already recorded on the amnesty be lost on the altar of lack of adequate monetary provisions for the implementation of the programme.

“The amnesty programme is significant in the sense that it has taken the former militants out of the creeks resulting in relative peace in the Niger Delta region.

“Such is the peace that we now have in the region that reports of oil installations or pipelines being blown up today or people (especially expatriates) being kidnapped tomorrow have abated,” the PPA boss noted in a statement.

He said: “The relative peace has given us hope that the problem in the region which gives the nation the bulk of its income is on the verge of resolving the problem of militancy once and for all, with the former militants rehabilitation and infrastructural development in the N-Delta.

“But the disturbing news is that the former militants are not being adequately catered for leading to abandonment of camp, possibly owing to poor funding of the amnesty programme.

“If this situation is allowed to linger and the former militants return to the creeks to continue their activities, the gains already recorded on the amnesty would have been lost.

“On this score, it behoves on government to make sufficient provision for the amnesty initiative and development of the Niger Delta to restore peace to the region once and for all.”


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