Ex-militants Canvass Support For Buhari’s Niger Delta Reforms | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Ex-militants Canvass Support For Buhari’s Niger Delta Reforms

Posted: Nov 6, 2015 at 7:29 pm   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Igoniko Oduma,


Ex-militant leaders in the Niger Delta under ‘The Third Phase’ Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP) of the Federal Government have expressed confidence in the President Muhammadu Buhari administration to resolve some knotty issues surrounding the  programme.
They have therefore called on ex-agitators to support Buhari’s reform programmes for the region.
The ex-militants, in a communique issued after their emergency meeting in Yenagoa on Friday, asked those behind heinous crimes in Bayelsa State and the region to turn a new leaf.
The communique, made available to newsmen  after the meeting, was signed by the National Chairman, Third Phase, Ebi John; Vice-Chairman, Ogundere Olarotimi; and Secretary, Gomeromo Henry.
The ex-creek warlords who expressed worry over the rampant cases of kidnapping, sea piracy and other crimes in the state, called on ex-agitators to shun criminalities in the interest of peace and development.
They commended the Coordinator, Presidential Amnesty Programme, Brig.-Gen Paul Boro (retd.), for sanitising the rot left behind by former Coordinator of the programme under Goodluck Jonathan administration.
The ex-militants claimed that the former Coordinator failed to carry some ex-agitators along, noting that the development resulted in some of them going back to the creeks to carry out criminalities.
“We urge every ex-agitators to key into the development plan of the Federal Government towards the Niger Delta cause. They should shun any form of criminality and inciting others to unleash mayhem on the region.
“When the former Coordinator was there, he was making things difficult for the Third Phase group but since this new Coordinator, Paul Boroh,  came on board, he has been so friendly and receptive.  Whatever petition you send, he will send it to the appropriate authorities and the issues are resolved amicably.
“Boro has settled our arrears and right now everywhere is peaceful. We wish him well and pray that God will give him the wisdom to take the amnesty programme to a greater height.
“We believe in Buhari administration and the new SA has been cleaning the rot the former SA left behind.”
Speaking on the past leadership of the Third Phase, the ex-militants said they were removed because they were found wanting.
They expressed confidence in the leadership of Ebi John, whom they said is a compassionate leader who is not selfish in his drive to make the ex-agitators realise their aspirations.
They further faulted the former coordinator, saying during his time, he recognised people who were not in the struggle and failed to recognise those who made the struggle to achieve result”, they said.
According to them, “The former SA gave opportunities to those who did not carry arms during the documentation process, that is why there are many crimes such as kidnapping, sea piracy and other criminal activities in the Niger Delta.
“We are looking at ways we can work with the security agencies to tackle the crimes in the Niger Delta. Some of the causes of these crimes in the region are lack of orientation,  hunger and lack of education.
“Many of them are aggrieved that their arms are collected yet they are not recognised in the Amnesty programme. This is because the former leaders did not present the matter to the appropriate authorities well.
“We will see how we can harmonise with them to embrace peace so that Niger Delta can be a peaceful place for people to live. We know the present administration at the centre means well for the region.”