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Amnesty: Bayelsa militants surrender arms, gunboats

By Samuel Oyadongha
Over two hundred rifles including two gunboats were yesterday submitted by repentant militant leaders in Bayelsa State bringing to an end fears that the militias may have shunned the amnesty programme.

Though the actual hand over ceremony is slated for today (Saturday) at the Yenagoa ‘ Peace Park ’ six of the repentant militant leaders yesterday at a symbolic exercise handed over their arms to the police at the Government House.

The operation was supervised by the security agencies in conjunction with the state peace and conflict resolution committee.

The arms and ammunition surrendered by the militant leaders include AK47 assault rifles, K2 , Lar, MG and G3.
The militant leaders who surrendered their weapons at the symbolic exercise were Gen Owei Africa, Commander  Ogunbos, Commander Lagos, Commander Lamin, Osein Clever and Agulu Opuoru, the second -in-commander to late Kitikata.

Gen Africa alone it was learnt submitted about one hundred arms which were brought in three Toyota Hilux jeeps.
Saturday Vanguard also reliably learnt that the rehabilitation centre for the repentant militants in the state has been moved to Otuoke in Ogbia local government area of the state as against the Imiringi and Tungbo centres that were initially chosen.

Though the reason for the shift in venue could not be ascertained but it was gathered that it might not be unconnected with the deplorable state of the facilities at the Imiringi and Tungbo centres initially chosen for the rehabilitation centres.

Confirming the development, the state Commissioner of Police, Elder Onuoha Udeka said over two hundred arms including two gunboats had been submitted by six of the militant leaders in the state.

Said an elated Elder Udeka, “we are happy today, since the amnesty started people have been saying nothing has happened. So far, six of the militant leaders have submitted their arms.”

The commissioner of police specifically commended the state government for prevailing on the militants to embrace the Federal Government amnesty offer.

The repentant militants, it would be recalled have expressed their reservation over the use of Joint Task Force at the arms collection centres and prefered the use of the police and the  peace and conflict resolution committee.


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