As the amnesty programme winds up next year, the presidency has said President Muhammadu Buhari has delivered his promise on the Niger Delta by ensuring the completion and sustainability of key programmes.
According to the Special Adviser on Niger Delta to the President and Coordinator of the Presidential amnesty programme, Brig Gen Paul Boroh, the programme has been a success story as it has transformed militants to electrical engineers, marine engineers etc.
He spoke during the presentation of a refurbished 200kva 11/415kv transformer and demonstration by the four best graduates from the just concluded Presidential Niger Delta Amnesty Programme on Electric Power Transformer Repair and Maintenance in Port Harcourt by Brainbox Matrix Services Limited.
Borrow said, “First, I appreciate the President for sustaining this programme because if not for his giving us the go ahead to continue your training the capacity of the ex-agitators, it would have been difficult for us to achieve this great feat today.
“You can imagine a group of persons who have transformed from militancy to be electrical engineers, obviously I’m very proud of it because it has been a success story. And my appreciation goes to Mr. President who in his determination and commitment in stabilizing the Niger Delta region through human capacity development as well as infrastructural development.
“In this case is two in one, the ex-agitators, 23 of them have developed their human capacity in terms of skills acquisition in transformer maintenance and establishment. This has transformed these persons to who they were to the present as well as the refurbishment of transformer which will now supply power to the environment where it is deployed.”
Asked how how realistic the projection that the programme will end next year is, Boroh said the exit strategy of the presidential amnesty programme has the connotation of adequate requirements to ensure continuity adding that the President has bought into the development of region through sustaining the programme.
According to him,this is linked to President Buhari ‘s promises during the campaigns when he said he was committed to ensuring the Niger Delta is stable during his administration and this came to manifestation during the flag off on the Ogoni clean up.
“He also ensured that in this year’s budget the rail line running from Lagos to Calabar was included in the budget. All these will create room for job creation and infrastructural development of the region.
“Only two days ago, he set up an executive committee on stoppage of gas flaring in the Niger Delta, this will translate to high level of job creation and infrastructural development of the region.
“The president also ensured that the pilot trainees in Jordan completed their Programme and ensured the development of human capacity development of the ex-agitators in agriculture which will ensure job, wealth creation as well as food security. The amnesty office has been mandated to use the bio-resource center in Odi, Oyo, Cross River, all these are to demonstration Mr. President’s interest to revamp the region,” Boroh said.
On agitation in the Niger Delta, he said, “For those still in the creeks, this is a challenge, is an opening, a wider platform for the, to emulate and embrace so that their capacity will also be developed, instead of wasting the human resource elements in them. This means opportunities are open to them whether they are agitators or not.”
Copyright Ships & Ports Ltd. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit given to www.shipsandports.com.ng as the source.