By Emma Ujah
The Amnesty Office, has sent out a new team of 137 ex-militants to South Africa for further training in various trades where they would qualify for international certification.
The group which received final briefings in Abuja, yesterday, after an orientation for the foreign training, were scheduled to jet out this morning for the six-month training in Pretoria, after which they would have become sufficiently skilled to secure gainful employment or establish their individual businesses.
In his remarks at the briefing, the South African Deputy High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mr. Godfrey Malaudzi, urged the ex-militants to be good ambassadors of Nigeria and that they should be mindful of their conducts in the country.
“Use the opportunity of the visit to disabuse the minds of the people there over the negative impressions they may have about Nigerians. Do Nigeria proud when you get there. Adjust to the environment there and be conscious of the fact that the cultures of the two countries are not exactly the same,” he said.
On his part, Chief Security Officer, CSO, of the programme, Lt. Col. Adewale Adekoya who handed down a code of conduct to the trainees, told them to obey laws of their host country as well as rules of the training centres and hotels where they would be accommodated.
Specifically, Lt. Col Adekoya warned “any form of violence or disorderly behavior during or after the training is not allowed. You can’t afford to be unruly. No bad behavior”, he added.
The CSO told the youths to learn a lesson from some of their colleagues who were deported from various countries, including Ghana, America and Russia due to bad behaviour and that anyone so deported would have himself to blame as such a person would not be given any other attention by the Amnesty Office until the remaining over 20, 000 ex-militants would have had their turns in training.
His words, “some have been deported for bad behaviour. If you are deported, you are coming to queue behind the over 20, 000 that have not been given the same opportunity .”
we have brought back 6 people from USA, some from Russia and South Africa. Don’t allow anything that will distract you”.
To keep out of trouble , the military officer asked the trainees to avoid verbal and physical abuse at all cost, no matter the provocation, adding, “you will get all that you deserve. Don’t for any reason whatsoever, use verbal or physically abuse your trainers or on one another.”
“Out there you are going to bear your father’s name. Everyone will bear his father’s name. One was deported from Russia for slapping a Russian girl. He would have been sent an 9-year jail term if he had been charged in court. He had to be deported”.
The trainees were also sternly warned to avoid illicit drugs in terms of consumption and trafficking. They were equally told to avoid all forms of demonstrations within the period of their stay.
Rather they were asked to channel all grievances that may arise to the Amnesty Office through the well-established line of communication through their heads or report to the authorities of the training institute.
The ex-militants would receive a $ 500 clothing allowance and a monthly allowance of $500 each. The training institute would provide them accommodation and feeding.