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Anxiety as ex-agitators threaten return to creeks over non-inclusion in Amnesty Training



Sylvester Idowu in Warri

Ahead of the 2023 general elections, three angry ex-agitators have threatened to return to creeks over failure by the Presidential Amnesty office to accomplish the promise to enroll them for training as enshrined in the policy of the agency.

In a letter sent Yesterday by the aggrieved ex-agitators to the Presidential Amnesty office Abuja, copies of which were made available to the Joint Task Force (JTF) Operation Restore Hope and newsmen accused the agency of shortchanging them despite embracing the programme.

It will be recalled that the ex-agitators had in February, this year, also protested against their non-inclusion for training by the Presidential Amnesty office despite being mobilised and captured in the programme since 2010.

The ex-agitators, Milka Dennis, Friday Akpadewei and Titomas Awani, in series of letters to the Coordinator of Presidential Amnesty Programme, Abuja, and Commander, Operation Delta Safe in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, lamented that they were yet to be mobilised for training after being documented with the Amnesty office.

In the letters, which copies were made available to our Correspondent, the ex-agitators said they were beneficiaries of the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP) by virtue of their acceptance and enlistment into the programme during the second phase of the programme in 2010.

One of the letters written by their lawyer, Sonny Okorodas, and dated June 24, 2021, read thus: “After their enlistment into the programme, they were disarmed and captured into the programme and given necessary certificates and identification cards.

“However, despite receiving their monthly stipends of N65,000, all other entitlements due them have not been given them. For instance, Milka Dennis and Titomas Awani have not been taken for training and all its accompanying empowerment after training while Friday Akpadewei’s name is being used by another person for training without his consent and approval.”

In responding to one of the letters, the Joint Task Force, Operation Delta Safe, Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, in a letter signed by Col. S. A. Jimoh forwarded a Memo dated June 24, 2021, to the Presidential Amnesty office urging the coordinator to look into the grievances of the ex-agitators.

The ex-agitators, in an interview with our Correspondent said despite several efforts made to Amnesty office in Abuja to rectify the issues, they were yet to get any meaningful response 12 years after.

They, therefore, appealed to the Coordinator of PAP, Col. Milliand Dikio, to urgently look into their issues and correct whatever might be hindering their enlistment for the training and other entitlements.