Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta and Coordinator, Presidential Amnesty Programme, Prof. Charles Dokubo, has described the Niger Delta as the most peaceful region in the country today suitable for more development, compared to what it was before the introduction of the Presidential Amnesty Programme by the federal government.
The Amnesty boss, who commended the initiators of the PAP for ex-agitators, attributed the prevailing peace in the Niger Delta region to the successes of the programme.
Dokubo who spoke in Lagos at a meeting with leaders of the Niger Delta which had traditional rulers, former governors, as well as community leaders and other critical stakeholders in attendance, reiterated his determination to speedily retool the Amnesty Programme to make it more robust and impactful for the enlisted former agitators in the Niger Delta region.
He noted that the ultimate goal of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari is to achieve sustainable development in all facets of the region.
‘’I commend most honestly, the initiators of the Presidential Amnesty Programme. It is not a secret that the Programme has since 2010 aided the attainment of relative peace, safety and security in the Niger Delta.
Today, the region, once noted for its volatility, may well be regarded as the most peaceful part of Nigeria.
‘’Since inception, the Amnesty Programme, to a reasonable extent, has achieved its core mandate of aiding the processes of building and sustaining peace and safety in the Niger Delta and the entire Gulf of Guinea. I am not saying that we have attained perfection or Eldorado of sorts; I am only saying that the situation would have been far worse in the region and of course for the economy of our dear country. I do not believe that there is any one here who is not aware that prior to the proclamation of unconditional amnesty for former agitators in the Niger Delta in 2009, disruptions in the exploration, processing and export of crude oil almost brought our economy to a standstill.”
He thanked stakeholders and youths of the region on behalf of his principal, President Muhammadu Buhari, for the leadership they have brought to bear in ensuring sustainable peace in the region. Dokubo said he has ‘’mapped out his priority, which included the completion and activation of all the vocational training centres under construction across the states in the Niger Delta to fast track the training of the several beneficiaries awaiting skills acquisition, and empowerment through the provision of start-up packs and mentoring for several of the already trained and qualified ex-agitators to become entrepreneurs and possibly employ others.”
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