By Emma Amaize
EX-MILITANT leaders are angry with the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger-Delta, MEND, for aborting Monday’s post-amnesty dialogue in Warri, Delta State, with explosives.
One of them, a former top official of MEND, John Togo, told Vanguard that it was wrong for the militant group to detonate bombs at an event organised by Vanguard Newspapers, which everybody, including militants know is the leading newspaper in the agitation for the liberation of the region.
A source close to Government Ekpemupolo, alias Tompolo, who was on his way to the conference from Abuja, said he was sad when he heard that bombs were detonated 200 metres away from the Government House Annex, venue of the post-amnesty dialogue.
Victor Ebikabowei Ben, alias Boyloaf, who flew in from Abuja to Port-Harcourt for the dialogue, was on his way to Warri when he heard about the blasts.
He told Vanguard that the Federal Government Postâ€“Amnesty Committee on the Niger-Delta should be blamed for creating the loopholes that made ex-militants who accepted amnesty to begin to doubt the integrity of government in the post-amnesty programme.
He said it was wrong for the committee not to pay ex-militants it claimed to be rehabilitating their allowances and creating doubts in their minds about government sincerity, saying that some people were capitalising on the approach of the committee to the peace process to wreak havoc.
Boyloaf said the temporarily aborted post-amnesty dialogue by Vanguard was a major platform for the people of the region to ventilate their opinion on the way forward and the people should support Acting President Goodluck Jonathan who is from the area to maintain peace and develop the region, rather than stall it.