Govt to spend N35.8bn on ex-militants in 2014

Okrika militants turning in their weapons01 March 2014, Abuja – A total of N35.830 billion has been earmarked for the “reintegration” of Niger-Delta ex-militants enrolled in the Presidential Amnesty Programme in 2014.

This was disclosed by the Special Adviser to President Goodluck Jonathan on Amnesty Programme, Mr. Kingsley Kuku to the House of Representatives Committee on Niger Delta, chaired by Warman Ogoriba (PDP, Bayelsa).  Equally, a fresh vote of N22 billion has been proposed for the completion of the protracted East West road.

Explaining the allocation, Kuku said in 2013, the sum of N38.909 billion was appropriated for demobilised ex-agitators, while the sum of N546 million was provided for the reinsertion/transition safety allowance for 3, 642 transformed ex-agitators and their leaders enlisted in the third phase of the Amnesty programme, in compliance with the United Nations Disarmament, Demobilisation and Reintegration (DDR) Charter Code.

Kuku asked for an additional N23.625 billion for the payment of N65, 000 monthly stipends to 30,000 ex-militants adding that N3.825 billion will also be needed to cover the cost of operations in the Presidential Amnesty Office.

He also listed the achievements of the programme as the transformation of 2,200 ex-militants, who are billed to be placed in either formal education or vocational training. He said half of the number has opted for vocational training, while the remaining 700 would be trained locally while 400 will be trained offshore.

The balance of 200 will be placed on foundation or pathway programmes that will be conducted within the country to prepare the delegates for placements for universities offshore, Kuku told the House Committee.

He explained that of the 30,000 statutorily enlisted in the Presidential Amnesty Programme, a total number of 18,000 delegates have either graduated or are currently in either vocational or educational training facilities within the country and abroad.

“With this figure, we are left with a total number of 11,200 delegates awaiting placements in reintegration facilities”, he said.
He disclosed that in 2013, a total of 2,400 delegates were successfully deployed to vocational training centres both within the country and offshore.

Speaking further on the activities of the Amnesty Office, Kuku disclosed that in 2013, 834 delegates were placed in about 100 universities across the world while a total of 459 delegates were placed in private universities in Nigeria for the 2012/2013 session.


– This Day

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