13 August 2015, Abuja – Leaders of the defunct Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta, MEND, on Thursday threw their weight behind the ongoing probe and verification being conducted by the Chairman of the Presidential Amnesty Implementation Committee, Brig. Gen. Paul Boroh (retd.).
They said the probe became imperative in order to know the exact number of ex-militants benefiting from the Federal Government’s programme.
The ex-MEND leaders, under the auspices of Leadership, Peace and Cultural Development Initiative, said though some groups had expressed concern over the verification, the probe would help to sanitise and strengthen the programme.
Chairman of the LCPD, Pastor Wilson Reuben, said in a statement in Yenagoa that through the process, the government would be able to iron out issues of inclusion of those purportedly disarmed under the Third Phase of the programme.
Wilson expressed satisfaction over the ongoing probe and verification initiated by Boroh, saying the exercise would determine genuine beneficiaries of PAP, particularly those that formed the Third Phase of the programme.
He said, “We, the ex-agitators wish to let Brig-Gen. Paul Boroh (retd.) know that he has our full backing on this bold initiative. He should not be deterred in his mandate of implementing the PAP mandate to the letter.
“We urge Boroh to rally round the leadership of ex-agitators for inputs by having a meeting with Ebikabowei Victor-Ben, aka ‘General’ Boyloaf, and others on how best to handle the impasse arising from delays in the payment of stipends and allowances, among other lingering issues being faced by those in foreign institutions.
“We also urge Boroh to look into the issue of N65,000 being received by the leaders because the amount is too small compared to the burden of their followers they shoulder.
“We thank President Muhammadu Buhari for keeping to his word on his keen concern in the smooth and efficient running of the amnesty programme with a credible character such as Boroh as he unfolds other agenda for the Niger Delta.”