By Ike Uchechukwu
The Presidential Amnesty Programme, PAP, has called on its beneficiaries to get ready to learn the periquisites of owning and running modular refineries following ongoing measures by the Federal Government to integrate artisanal refiners into the oil and gas sector.
The Sole Administrator, PAP, Col. Milland Dixon Dikio, said the scheme was ready to train the ex-agitators into the business of refining crude oil to intensify manpower development and increase refining capacity for economic prosperity.
In a statement signed by the Special Adviser, Media to the Interim Administrator, Nneotaobase Egbe, said Dikio spoke in Abuja at a summit organized by the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning in collaboration with the Office of Senior Special Assistant to the President on Niger Delta Affairs and Economic Diversification.
Diko represented by his Special Adviser on Finance and Projects, Mr. Godwin Ekpo, at the summit entitled, Integrating Local Artisanal Modular Refineries to Nigeria’s Mainstream Oil Sector, said training and engaging ex-agitators on local refining of crude oil would facilitate rapid development of the region.
He said it would minimise oil theft, reduce unemployment in the region, minimise pollution and give them and the locals a sense of belonging.
His words : “Getting our delegates to participate actively in this artisanal and modular refining initiative will among other things give them a sense of belonging, minimize oil theft, reduce unemployment in the region, minimize pollution and provide pipeline surveillance and eradicate pipeline vandalization.”
Dikio (rtd), who commended the organisers of the summit, said that the programme had trained over 3000 delegates in fabrication, pipeline and underwater welding, petroleum technology and engineering.
He revealed that the Bradama International Skill Works Ltd in Agadagba Obon, Ondo State, a training facility owned by an ex-agitator, Peter Bibopere Ajube aka General Shoot-at-Site, was one of the success stories of PAP.
He said the former agitator had successfully trained and employed delegates in fabrication and steel works, pipeline welding among others in his facility.
He also disclosed that the Amnesty Vocational Training Facility in Agadagba, Ondo State, which specialized in oil and gas activities was part of PAP’s initiatives to build manpower in the region.
The statement recalled that one of the intentions of Late President Musa Yar’Adua in setting up the PAP was to get the money invested in the programme to circulate within the region through massive manpower development and patronage of businesses located in the Niger Delta.
The statement further said that objective was to increase the buying power of the people and drive investment while mitigating the security issues adding that the current leadership of PAP was committed to restoring the mandate of the programme to its original intent.