Niger Delta ex-agitators warn politicians to steer clear of Amnesty Office
We’ll resist appointment of another interim administrator at NDDC, says Clark
Former agitators belonging to the Western flank of the now defunct Movement for Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) have warned politicians to stay away from the Presidential Amnesty Office (PAP), unless their involvements are in tandem with a mandate of peace in the Niger Delta.
The warning was contained in a statement issued by the spokesman of the Western zone, Captain Loveday Angokuro, and came on the heels of threat by the Senate to issue a warrant of arrest on the Interim Administrator of the Presidential Amnesty Programme, Col. Milland Dikio (rtd).
Chairman, Senate Committee on Public Accounts, Matthew Urhoghide, had, on Sunday, threatened that Dikio risked being arrested, following his alleged failure to appear before the chamber.
But the former agitators alleged that the Edo politician and some of his colleagues were on a personal mission of vendetta, after their failure to extract favours from the Amnesty Office.
They said: “The so-called threat by the senator, to the best of our knowledge, is a personal and ego mission. He and his co-travelers are on a personal vendetta, which is the result of a failed attempt to extract highly unreasonable favours from the Amnesty Office.
“To the best of our knowledge, the current interim coordinator of the Presidential Amnesty Programme has successfully piloted affairs of the office since he assumed leadership of the PAP.
“Dikio has changed the narrative to the best of his ability while not compromising standards. Therefore, the allegation by the senator that the interim administrator shunned the Senate Committee on Public Accounts is not correct.”
MEANWHILE, elder statesman and leader of Pan-Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF), Chief Edwin Clark, has called for immediate inauguration of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) board, in compliance with the law.
He warned that people of the Niger Delta will “sternly resist any attempt to appoint another interim administrator for NDDC.”
While, playing host to Niger Delta leaders at his residence in Abuja, yesterday, Clark recalled that when President Muhammadu Buhari received the leadership of Ijaw National Congress (INC) on June 24, 2021, he said the board would be inaugurated once a forensic audit report was submitted.
Clark said: “May I use this medium to kindly appeal to His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari, to please, as a matter of importance and urgency, inaugurate a substantive board for the NDDC, in accordance with the Niger-Delta Development Commission (Establishment etc.) Act 2000, No. 6, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria.”
He added: “As Buhari ends his tenure, we plead and wish that the cordial relationship, which has been established out of very deliberate and concerted efforts, should not be truncated. We plead with him not to listen to the selfish demands of a few individuals who want to continue to despoil and milk dry the Niger Delta region.
“My simple message is for him to, without delay, inaugurate a substantive board for the NDDC, in line with the Act setting up the Commission.”