…Says it’s risky to depend on other regions for food
By Davies Iheamnachor
The Interim Administrator of Presidential Amnesty Programme, PAP, has said that beneficiaries of the training programme would henceforth be trained to dominate areas of food security, maritime sector and other areas of comparative advantage in the Niger Delta region.
Dikio stated that it has become important for amnesty beneficiaries to get actively involved in empowerment programmes that would guarantee food security in the region.
Dikio, in a speech at the Convocation and Investiture Ceremony of the Gregory University, Uturu, Abia State, said it was risky to continue depending on other region’s for food supply.
It is worthy to note that PAP has over 400 ex-agitators being trained in various faculties at the Gregory University under the programme’s formal education scholarship schemes.
Speaking, Dikio said: “We are also looking at food security. Most of the food we eat come from other places. If the supply chain is cut off, it means you starve and without food security, you don’t have any security.”
Dikio maintained that the Niger Delta region has comparative advantage in the maritime sector, noting that it was time the ex-agitators took control of all the opportunities in the sector.
He said: “There are unique attributes of the Niger Delta. Can we train, empower people to dominate the maritime economy? We can because it is an area where we have comparative advantage.
“It is a huge industry out there that we need to dominate. We are going to rethink what we are doing to reflect the areas of comparative advantage and mastery so we can dominate those areas effectively.
“The maritime industry is dominated by people from South East Asia and they don’t even have enough people. Lagos has a huge market. We are going to partner with people who have the wherewithal to put their feet down to dominate the maritime sector.”
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The Interim Administrator said to develop the region, stakeholders must pay attention to manpower development, urging the people to give less attention to protest as a means of agitation.
He said: “We have over the time become known as a region of people who are constantly protesting. During my maiden tour, we emphasised that a toxic environment is antithetical to development.
“You cannot have industries established in environment where there is constant uproar. I challenge you scholars to adopt a new approach to protest which is advocacy of excellence”.
Describing former Goodluck Jonathan as an epitome of excellence, Dikio appealed to scholars to emulate the sterling qualities of the former President.