Calls for urgent termination of caretaker commitee of PAP
By Binebai Princewill
Groups under the aegis of Niger Delta Movement for Progress (NDMF) and the Education Rights Agitation of the Ijaws, (ERAI) has called on president Muhammadu Buhari to as a matter of urgency look into the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP) and appoint a credible Ijaw son, Chief Dennis Otuaro from Delta State to pilot the affairs of the programme and help to achieve its goals.
The call was made via a joint press statement signed by the duo of Comr. Johnny Ebimienfi, president general of ERAI and Comr. Kirifede Warekore, president of NDMF after some students under the sponsorship of the Presidential Amnesty Programme payed them a courtesy visit recently in Warri and lamented how they have not been given their stipends for over six months now.
The statement noted that the non payment of the stipends is as a result of the mismanagement of the programme and the nonchalant attitude towards the plight of Niger Deltans by those running the programme now, saying “a credible Ijaw son from Delta state in the person of chief Dennis Otuaro should be appointed to manage the programme as he is credible and was also a student leader (National Union of Izon-ebe Students) who really understands the plight of students in the region.”
The statement continued: “It is unacceptable for the presidency to still keep someone who is not conversant with the plight of the ex-agitators and the issues still confronting the people, including students under the scheme when there is capable and credible person in the region to run the affairs.
“This is wrong and it is an injustice and we will not accept this anymore as a people. It seems those running the programme now are not even aware that throughout this period of lockdown the students have been engaged in online classes, tests and exams which a lot of money is spent because they are constantly buying data and other gadgets, and also burning fuel constantly to give themselves power supply because they are mostly in places that are not connected to the national grid. That costs a lot of money. “
The duo also noted that since the Presidential Amnesty Programme commenced in 2009 by former president, late Musa Yar’adua, Delta State which contributed majorly to its establishment has not been given the chance to man this office despite the great role played by Delta Ijaws especially Gbaramatu kingdom towards achieving peace in the Niger Delta region leading to massive production of oil which in turn has boosted the nation’s economy.
“The president should terminate the caretaker committe now and appoint Chief Dennis Otuaro to run that office this time and be urgent about it, as we are no longer comfortable with how things are being handled.
“The presidency should know that the relative peace enjoyed in the region which has resulted to this high level of oil production in the country is anchored on conditions and one of such conditions is to do justice to the people and the president Muhammad Buhari led government should not take this existing peace for granted.” The groups warned.
The Liberator Newspaper has reported