Port Harcourt — The Interim Administrator, Presidential Amnesty Programme, Col. Milland Dixon Dikio (rtd), has assured of his commitment towards transforming ex-militants into successful entrepreneurs, beyond N65,000 monthly stipends.
To this end, the Amnesty boss has charged all ex-agitators on the programme to develop business proposals and ideas capable of transforming them into world-class entrepreneurs.
Dikio announced this in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State capital, when he met with some leaders of first phase amnesty programme drawn from Akwa Ibom and Cross River States, according to his Media Aide, Nneotaobase Egbe.
He assured that PAP would support business proposals and ideas from ex-agitators to aid their transition into entrepreneurs, who would no longer depend on N65,000 monthly stipends.
“I want to encourage you to bring your ideas and business proposals foreword, and let’s support you to become successful entrepreneurs.
“We will organize business seminars to train and equip you to do good and legitimate businesses.”
“We are no more giving out contracts in the Amnesty office unless you are going to train, employ and mentor our ex-agitators. That’s our new philosophy going forward.
“PAP will pay for the training but with the understanding that our people will be employed and mentored afterward. We are simply adopting the Igbo apprenticeship system so that at the end of the day it’s a win-win for everybody.”
The Amnesty boss also urged ex-agitators in the region, to form cooperatives to enable them to take advantage of the business opportunities in the region, such as maritime businesses.
“There are endless opportunities beyond the payment of stipends. As a people, we need to take advantage of the opportunities around us to transform our region. For instance, we can exploit our huge maritime potentials to benefit the region.
“Our maritime resource is key to the development of the Niger Delta and it is one sector where people of the region can benefit substantially if they are well trained to harness the enormous opportunities therein.
“Nothing stops you from forming yourselves into cooperatives to enable you access loans to acquire fishing trawlers. It’s important that you start thinking beyond N65k monthly stipends.”