January 17, 2023

Call for suspension: Don’t negotiate with blackmailers, Ijaw group tells Ndiomu


—Says 2023 political opponents ‘re at work

By Johnbosco Agbakwuru, Abuja

Following the alleged diversion of funds in the Presidential Amnesty Programme, PAP, ahead of the 2023 general elections, a socio-cultural organisation in the Niger Delta region under the auspices of Ijaw Defenders Mandate, IDM,  has urged the Interim Administrator of PAP, Maj. Gen. Barry Tariye Ndiomu (retd) to resist the urge to engage with blackmailers.

The group said those calling for the suspension of the Interim Administrator are indirectly blackmailing President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.

Responding to a recent online publication authored by some persons who claimed to represent ex-agitators, the Public Relations Officer, PRO, of the Ijaw Defenders Mandate, IDM, Comrade Solomon Igbanwei, said “those who are busy reporting the current Interim Administrator to the National Security Adviser, Maj. Gen. Mohammed Babagana Monguno (retd) may have forgotten that President Buhari appointed Gen. Ndiomu based on his personal knowledge about his integrity.”

The President said that the NSA, who supervises the Presidential Amnesty Programme is one of the most intelligent and hardworking military officers the Nigerian Army has produced, adding that it is laughable that some ex-agitators would wake up to call for the suspension of the Interim Administrator of PAP who has barely spent four months in office to be removed from office at this critical stage in our polity.

He said “the tone of the said petition, calling for the suspension of Gen. Ndiomu few weeks to the general elections speaks volumes of the intentions of the sponsors of the scheme, reiterating that allegations that bother on financial impropriety and diversion of funds should be left for the appropriate authorities to handle.”

Igbanwei said it was funny that the petitioners, who expressed their lack of confidence in the anti-graft agencies are the same persons calling for the investigation of the amnesty programme, claiming that the language used in the said petition indicated the “desperation of their sponsors who may not be far from those who want to settle political scores ahead of the forthcoming general elections.”

The group said the two core hallmarks of Gen. Ndiomu’s led-government is integrity and purposeful leadership which have started yielding positive results in the the amnesty programme within the last couple of months, stressing that anyone kicking against Ndiomu was not only fraudulent but champions of corruption.

It pointed out that the Interim Administrator has been working round the clock to make sure that the ex-agitators have gainful employment in federal parastatals, apart from making spirited efforts to introduce soft loans for them to become self-reliant, as such benefits will also trickle down to all facets of our development aspirations in the Niger Delta region.