02 March 2014, Abuja – Mr Kingsley Kuku, the Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta, said on Friday that N35.83 billion would be spent in 2014 for the reintegration of ex-militants enrolled in the Presidential Amnesty Programme.
Kuku disclosed this in Abuja at a budget defence session with the House of Representatives Committee on Niger Delta.
He told the committee that a total budget proposal for the Presidential Amnesty Programme in the 2014 was N63.28 billion, of which N35,83 billion would expended on the reintegration component of the presidential amnesty.
He said another N23.62 billion was required for the payment of N65,000 monthly stipends to 30,000 ex-militants, adding that N3.82 billion will also be needed to cover the cost of operations in the Presidential Amnesty Office.
Kuku disclosed that about 2,200 transformed ex-militants were expected to be placed in either formal education or vocational training.
He explained further that out of the 1,100 that have opted for vocational training, 700 would be trained locally while 400 would be trained abroad.
According to him, the remaining 200 will be placed in foundation or pathway programmes that will be conducted within the country to prepare the delegates for placements for universities offshore.
He explained that of the 30,000 statutorily enlisted in the programme, 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.
The aide also informed the committee that in 2013, N38.90 billion was appropriated for the demobilised ex-agitators.
He added that in compliance with the UN Disarmament, Demobilisation and Reintegration (DDR) Charter Code, N546 million was provided for in the 2013 budget to take care of the reinsertion/transition safety allowance for 3,642 transformed ex-agitators and their leaders enlisted in the third phase of the amnesty programme.
He disclosed that in 2013, 2,400 delegates were successfully deployed to vocational training centres both within the country and outside.
“Of this number, 671 delegates have since graduated, earning globally recognised certificates in such fields as marine technology, marine mechanic, commercial driving, agriculture, drilling, boat building, oil and gas technology, automobile technology and of course aviation,” Kuku said.
Speaking further on the activities of the Amnesty Office, he disclosed that in 2013, 834 delegates were placed in about 100 universities across the world.
He also said that a total of 459 delegates were placed in private universities in Nigeria for the 2012/2013 session.
Meanwhile, the supervising Minister for the Niger Delta Ministry, Mr Darius Ishaku, has said that N22 billion has been proposed in the 2014 budget for the completion of the East West road.
He said the money would significantly offset liabilities in order to meet the 2014 target for the completion of the road. (NAN)