Ex-militants warn against termination of amnesty programme

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By Samuel Oyadongha
Yenagoa—Ex-militants in the Niger Delta have said that termination of the Presidential Amnesty Programme in 2015 could trigger fresh crisis in the region.

Coordinator of the ex-militants under the third phase amnesty (Ebipa-Opre Ex-militants Forum), Mr. Ramsey Oyakemeagbegha, in a statement in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, said that the conditions which triggered militancy in the region had not been addressed.
He said: “We are of the view and in support of our leader, Asari Dokubo’s suggestion that the amnesty should continue and not stop, as being rumoured, in 2015.

“Our people are still without potable water, no good education and functional health facilities.
“Pollution occasioned by the oil industry still continues and there is a multitude of unemployed youth in the land.
“Making 2015 the end of the Presidential Amnesty Programme, as being rumoured, could spell more trouble for our region and the country. An idle mind is the devil’s workshop. A stitch in time, they say, saves nine.”

The group condemned the upsurge in violent crime on the waterways of the region and called on the relevant authorities to stem the tide.
The ex-militants also restated their resolve to support President Goodluck Jonathan, if he declares his intention to contest the 2015 poll.

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