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Prof. Charles Dokubo, Coordinator, Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP), on Wednesday, promised that trained Niger Delta Ex-agitators would be reintegrated through effective empowerment for development of the country.
Dokubo gave this promise when he visited the Managing Director, News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Mr Bayo Onanuga in Abuja.
He said that the objective of the programme was sustenance of peace, security and development in the Niger Delta.
He said that his administration was ready to move the programme from demobilisation to reintegration process, whereby the trained participants of the programme would be independent and employers of labour.
“Those who have been trained in vocational skills and were given access to the programme will be employed so as not to depend solely on government’s stipends.
“I am here to learn a lot and also to tell you how far this project has been driven since I came into the office.
“I came to an office that has been mainly dysfunctional, but I’m trying to put things together in such a way that it could attain the height that has been set for it.
“It is not easy, there are a lot of challenges on the way, but we believe that with the collaboration of agencies like NAN and the dedicated staff we have in the office now, we can always meet the goal that we set for ourselves.
“My objective and mission after my appointment is to move the organisation out of demobilisation to reintegration,’’ he said.
According to the coordinator, the amnesty programme is based on two stances such as security and development.
“This is because without security there could be no development. We all know that Niger Delta region is just coming out from post conflict.
“So, how do we put on institutions, build infrastructures to enable the citizens of that region to believe that the government is working for them?
“Training and retraining of beneficiaries of the programme will be accorded top priority.
In his remark, Managing Director, NAN, appreciated Dokubo and pledged the agency’s readiness to deliver services when needed.
Onanuga, who noted the difficulties in managing issues that concerns youth, said that through its vision and mission, the Amnesty programme would overcome the challenges.
“Especially, now that you’re moving from the stage of paying the ex-agitators stipends to having them trained and gainfully employed thereby making them to be fully reintegrated into the society.
The managing director also noted that with this vision, the ex-agitators would be economically empowered and relevant to the country, because they will contribute their own quota to the development of the country.
Onanuga also assured the coordinator that the agency would continue to support the programme to ensure that it achieved its aims and objectives.