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Ex-militants sponsored to abort training, says Boyloaf

By  Emma Amaize & John Ighodaro
WARRI— EX-MILITANT leader and member of  the Post-Amnesty Implementation Committee, Mr. Victor Ebikabowei Ben, alias Boyloaf, yesterday, alleged that some leaders bent on discrediting President Goodluck Jonathan, were behind the clandestine plot to cause confusion at their Obubra training camp in Cross River State.

However, Coordinator of the Post-Amnesty Programme, Chief Timi Alaibe, told Vanguard when contacted, that he was aware that some people were deliberating creating confusion to disrupt, but stressed that he did not know who recruited them.

Meantime, the ex-militants who broke into the vehicle of Chief Alaibe in Obubra, last week, and looted property inside the vehicle have reportedly fled the camp, while a disciplinary committee has been constituted to handle the issue of security in the camp.

Boyloaf said: “The plot paints the picture that the training of ex-militants by the Federal Government will not solve the problem. It is also to spite President Goodluck Jonathan because of the 2011 presidential race.

I think they are saying if the training succeeds, people will say let Nigerians support him because he has been able to consolidate on the peace and security situation in the country. So, they want to stop him”.

The ex-militant leader said he reliably learnt that some Northern leaders contacted some ex-militants and told them the amount they would be paid to destabilize the training programme at Obubra because its success would increase the acceptability of President Jonathan and stop the chances of some of them particularly in the North.

He said: “Some of those contacted rejected the offer but it is apparent that some other people accepted to do the job and that appears to be what is playing out in the camp.”
It was gathered that the minor misunderstanding in the camp was between an ex-militant leader, Young Shall Grow and his boys from Bayelsa State, over welfare package to them from Mr. Alaibe, which was not forthcoming.

A source said: “The Young Shall Grow camp believed that Governor Timipre Sylva had released a package for them, which they had not seen. And unfortunately or otherwise for Alaibe, it was through him that the boys accepted amnesty and they were expecting some money to be paid to them.

They were asking for such money in Obubra and Alaibe maintained that the Federal Government had spelt-out allowances to be paid to ex-militants undergoing training and it had nothing to do with other extraneous matters.”

Asked what the situation was like in the camp yesterday, Alaibe told Vanguard: “Things are calm, people are in the hall taking lectures as I speak to you now. I don’t know why some people are bent on painting a wrong picture of what is going on here because they don’t want the training to succeed.”

The formal opening of the training programme is scheduled for today, as much of what was done, last week, was biometrics registration.

Ex-militants want allowance

Meantime, ex-militants currently undergoing rehabilitation and re-orientation courses in Obubra have requested that their housing allowances be settled promptly.

The first batch of trainees in camp whose training is billed to expire, Friday, told Vanguard yesterday, that if their housing allowances were not paid, they would not leave the camp for the next batch of trainees to come in.

An ex-militant who described himself as Commander Obed Okoriko from Bayelsa said, “I must confess to you that we are enjoying this course, but of what use will it be if after undergoing this course we are not paid our housing allowances before we leave camp. When we leave camp, where are we going to stay to practice what we learned here.”

Also speaking, another ex-militant who described himself as Colson from Bayelsa State said: “We are not leaving the camp until they pay us our housing allowances.


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Comments expressed here do not reflect the opinions of vanguard newspapers or any employee thereof.