By Henry Umoru & Joseph Erunke
ABUJA—THE Senate has begun probe into how a total of N328 billion that was budgeted for the running of the Amnesty Programme since 2009 was spent, just as it vowed to thoroughly look into the books and sanction those who may have been found to have embezzled the money.
Declaring open a two- day Public Hearing on the Amnesty Programme, organised by the Senator Peter Nwaoboshi-led Senate Committee on Niger Delta, Senate President, Bukola Saraki, who noted that we must be courageous to tell ourselves the truth, warned that the Senate will not hesitate to sanction anyone found to have been responsible for the disappearance of money meant for the Amnesty Programme in the past.
Saraki who recalled that it was exactly six years ago that the programme took off, however, described the timing of the public hearing as perfect, adding that answers must be provided for a number of questions which include why the programme had not achieved target goals and why corruption inherent in the programme should be exposed through the hearing.
It will be recalled that former Special Adviser to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan on Niger Delta Affairs, Mr. Kingsley Kuku, had said that the Federal Government spent N243 billion on the programme as of 2014.