Jane Otu


DAILY COURIER – An umbrella group of ex-militant leaders and stakeholders from the Niger Delta region, have faulted the ordered verification exercise for beneficiaries of the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP), by the Interim Administrator, Major General Barry Tariye Ndiomu (rtd.), describing it as a ruse and part of a hidden and heinous plan, to systematically delist up to 10,000 Amnesty beneficiaries.


The group also alleged that the exercise is a means through which funds purportedly deducted (N650 million per month, for the remaining 7 months N4.550 billion) from the delisted beneficiaries account will be filtered away into private pockets, to cover their inflated flight tickets, travel and hotel accommodation allowances, meals, recreational allowances, duty travel allowances, security allowances, amongst others.


The group, in a statement via electronic mail, and signed by former ex-militant leader, Boma Inewariku, aka Atangba-One, noted with concern that despite successive Interim Administrators subjecting the Amnesty beneficiaries to numerous screenings and verification exercises with data and numeration figures available, the latest screening exercise under the Major General Barry Tariye Ndiomu (rtd.), is a deceitful ploy to systematically delist up to 10,000 Amnesty beneficiaries by 31st December, 2022, deadline.


According to the statement, Ndiomu and the federal government are forging ahead to conclude plans for the scrapping of the programme. “How many federal intervention programmes in the north, which we all know that there are many of these federal programmes in the north that receive billions of naira exploited from Niger Delta oil wealth, have been subjected to such scrutiny by their leaders?”


It pointed out that instead of unveiling new and progressive policies of moving the PAP forward, after claiming that the federal government has rescinded the decision to scrap the Amnesty Programme, the verification exercise is suspect and meant to carry out the mandate of terminating the amnesty in a few months.


According to him, the monies realised from delisting of beneficiaries, which would not be paid to them as required by law, is being diverted and allegedly embezzled on the pretence of conducting screening exercises. He also said that the individual who signed the letter ordering the wickedly planned verification exercise on behalf of the Interim Administrator, Mr Terry Ajobena, was sacked by Ndiomu’s predecessor, Col. Miland Dixon Dikkio (rtd.), for gross incompetence and alleged collusion with a dubious Amnesty contractor, who is the alleged owner the 15 infamous companies that is suing the Amnesty office for N3.8 billion in fraudulent unexecuted contracts meant to bankrupt the Amnesty programme.


The group, while claiming that they urged the various beneficiaries of the first, second and third Phases of the Amnesty programme to take note of the deceitful pattern with which the Major General Barry Tariye Ndiomu-led Amnesty office is adopting to hoodwink the region.


“First, the people of the region raised an alarm on the plot to scrap the Presidential Amnesty Programme and Stakeholders including Traditional Rulers, Political Leaders, State Governors and Activists warned against such plan, but NDIOMU, who has assured the Presidency of being able to terminate the Amnesty programme, which he (Ndiomu) said was the reason for his appointment, has adopted a different trick of gradually and systematically delisting beneficiaries, in order to show his employers that he is in-line with their mission, which is against the interest of the Niger Delta people.


“Secondly, While NDIOMU was on a tour to meet key stakeholders, including the foremost Former Militant Leader, High Chief Government Ekpemupolo, also known as GOC Tompolo, and meeting with other stakeholders in Abuja and Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NDIOMU waved off the Amnesty Programme as a failure and cunningly claimed that he is planning a new strategy to reform the office. He immediately started delisting the Amnesty beneficiaries without informing the key ex-militant leaders he met with including Tompolo, King Ateke Tom and others.


“While going ahead with the planned termination of the Amnesty programme, despite rising caution against it, the NDIOMU-led Amnesty office threw a “dummy,” claiming that the Federal Government has rescinded the decision to terminate the programme, and also planted media reports claiming that there were jubilations in the Niger Delta region. A few hours after that, the Amnesty office unveiled a clandestine plan to embark on a jamboree sale of thousands of empowerment items meant for beneficiaries of the program and properties belonging to the Presidential Amnesty Office under the guise of an approval from the National Security Adviser (NSA), Maj. Gen. Mohammed Babagana Monguno (rtd.).”


“Though the alleged fraudulent sales of Amnesty properties was called off after our outcry, and that of all right thinking and sane stakeholders, the Federal Government’s purported reversal of its decision to scrap the Amnesty Programme is a ruse (false flag), and the planned Verification Exercise by the Interim Administrator of PAP, Major General Barry Tariye NDIOMU (rtd), is a confirmation that the termination plan is ongoing, and no one in the Niger Delta region should be deceived. Therefore, all ex-militants and stakeholders across the region must peacefully resist NDIOMU’s tricks and drive away these wicked puppets in the Amnesty office that are pretending in an effort to creepily take away food and water from the mouths of our suffering fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, and children out of our region to stop further delisting of legitimate Amnesty beneficiaries.”