By Emma Amaize & Cletus Opukeme
WARRI—SOME former Niger Delta militant leaders, yesterday raised the alarm that powerful northerners have allegedly taken over the Presidential Amnesty Programme, PAP, swapping names of ex-agitators captured in the programme with Hausa/Fulani names as benefactors at most of the training institutions.
Leaders of Amnesty Phase 11, self-styled “Gen” Lord Agbuke and “Gen” Lucky Okete, in a statement, said: “Northern politicians have hijacked the office of the head of PAP, he is just there as a ceremonial head and only endorses memos, while they take decisions. What we are seeing in the Presidential Amnesty Programme is something we do not understand, specifically in the education department. We, therefore, call on the Chairman of PAP and Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta, Brig-Gen Paul Boroh (retd) to visit the universities, find out things for himself and correct the anomaly.
“It might interest the general public to know that the education department is influenced by these persons in such a manner that the original beneficiaries from the region, who submitted arms and were captured and received monthly stipends, are being short-changed with Hausa/Fulani names as benefactors at the training institutions. Our people have been short changed by some unknown persons from the Northern and Eastern parts of the country. Perhaps, they have sold our chances to those folks, we cannot tell. We have made series of applications, which have been sent to the office for approval for our boys to go to school, but to no avail.”