1500 Niger Delta militants have laid down their arms and decided to embrace the Federal Government sponsored amnesty program, reports say.
Sun reports that this is as a result of the intervention of the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr Ibe Kachikwu.
Speaking on behalf of the other militant commanders, General OC Babaeere and General America Tekeiminikpoba , in a statement said “We write to express our desire to surrender our arms and embrace the amnesty program as long as the federal government is sincere.
“With the timely intervention of the Minister of State for Petroleum, Dr. Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu, we the Commanders from Arepo Camp, Ikorodu Camp, Abule Camp, Fatorla Camp, Camp 5, Ibafo Camp, Magboro Camp, Epe Camp, Itokin Camp, Ilepete Camp, Okenekene Camp, Agric Camp, Gbokoda Camp and their environs, have made up our minds to accept amnesty because of the peaceful approach of the Minister of State for Petroleum.”
Adding that “We also agree that all NNPC facilities and its subsidiaries must work for the betterment of Nigeria and the economic efficiency in the face of dwindling oil prices.
“However, our willingness to surrender should not be seen as an act of cowardice, rather, as an act of patriotism.”
“Also, as we accept this amnesty, it is important to state that the first amnesty was not holistic and was characterized with fraud and fraudulent selections. We were not included in that amnesty program. Even as we tried all avenues to join the program, we were ignored completely,” the commanders said.
The militants also said “We are using this opportunity to call on all Nigerians to work with Mr. President to enable Nigeria move ahead.
“So, as we have agreed to come out, we state that we should be properly co-opted into the amnesty program. This is very important because we have skills and very vast knowledge and experience in the region. We have farmers, ship captains, ship engineers, divers, technicians, welders et cetera, and we have lived all our life in the region. Therefore, we understand every inch of the region.”
“Suffice to say that we have integrity. We believe in the peaceful dialogue and peace initiative by the Minister of State for Petroleum, Dr. Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu, and we will wait patiently for the response of the federal government so that we all can move Nigeria forward,” the commanders said.
Meanwhile, Gen. Paul Boroh (rtd), the Coordinator of the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP), has denied reports in some publications that he N48bn in five months.
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