By; RAYMOND TEDUNJAYE, Lagos
The Niger Delta Leadership Forum has expressed satisfaction over the suspension and subsequent sack of Professor Charles Quakers Dokubo as Special Adviser and Coordinator of the Amnesty Program, just as it cautioned President Muhammadu Buhari against appointing a politician, civil servant or military officer into the position henceforth.
It also called for the appointment of a substantive coordinator as holder of the office,against the old practice of an interim administrator.
Further, the group insisted that such appointee must be appointed from among the Niger Delta Agitators, through which efforts and agitation the programme was established.
The group claimed that the programme has become a vehicle of enrichment, retirement benefit and the settling of failed politicians and civil servants by the government.
It made the assertions in a statement signed by Toriomo Yerindideke Excel, chairman Bayelsa state phase one Leadership forum, Gen. Bob Iyallah Alikor River state chairman Phase one leadership forum, Agagha Appearance, leader igbigidi 1 chairman Edo state. Amaechi Adibuo chairman Imo state,Wanaemi Olotu, phase 2 Leader and high chief Livingstone Fortune, phase 3 leader.
According to the statement, members of the group said they have endured a precarious situation as a result of using the Amnesty office to compensate failed political stooge by the presidency.
It therefore warned that Enough is enough on this unending quagmire of failed Coordinators being appointed to manage the Mend fighters and beneficiaries, adding that what they need now is a product of the struggle to be the coordinator of the Amnesty programme.
The statement reads, ” Whereas the suspension and subsequent sack of Professor Charles Quakers Dokubo in our own cognitive appraisal is a welcome development, given the messy way he handled the Amnesty Program and Office in a manner tantamount to conversion of the said office to his many corrupt and fraudulent practices that made a mockry of accountability, transparency and the overall caricature of the intention for which the program was established to close the gap of economic and social balance in the Niger Delta particularly the Ijaw Nation.
Following the above preventable development that is without doubt inimical to the development, economic and social stability of the Niger Delta Region, we the executives and members of the Niger Delta Agitators Leadership Forum from various State Chapters; is using this medium to call on President Muhammadu Buhari to apply puritanical caution on appointing the next Special Adviser and Coordinator of the Amnesty Program.
This is not unconnected with the glaring fact that the program has become a vehicle of enrichment, retirement benefit and the settling of failed politicians and civil servants.
That is why we are asking the presidency to appoint a substantive Coordinator of the Amnesty programme and not an interim administrator.
The Amnesty programme is a security intervention proclamation and should not be handle with kids gloves in order for history not to repeat itself in the Niger Delta Region.
We have watched with utter amazement how a program established to deliver specific target goals, has been turned on it’s head, thereby leading to the corrupting of the program to the detriment of Delegates and Agitators whose blood and sweat of great sacrifice paved the way for the sustainable peace and stability in the Niger Delta and Nigeria leading to massive economic turnaround due to our support in stoping pipeline vandalism, oil bunkering, kidnappings and other social vices of which our people are the primary victims.
We have endured a precarious situation as a result of using the Amnesty office to compensate failed political stooge by the presidency.
Enough is enough on this unending quagmire of failed Coordinators being appoint to manage the Mend fighters and beneficiaries, what we need now is a product of the struggle to be the coordinator of the Amnesty programme.
The President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria if you truly wish the Niger Delta well then now is the time to listen to our people and not politicians who are fighting for their own personal and selfish aggrandizement.
We the Niger Delta Agitators have our leadership structure and now that the Federal Government on their own has tested the capacity of those whom they believe have the wherewithal to head and manage the program cum Amnesty Office, it is now our turn to decide how and whom to head the office and run things for us and the benefit of the region for which the office and program was created for.
We do not want politicians, civil servants and military personnels that will come with their own foreign and strange agendas and ostracise us from accessing an office that is created for us.
Therefore, we have resolved that the formidable leadership of our forum should be the way forward. We have capable hand that has led us and have showcased equity, equality accountability and transparency.
This is no other than the method which we have been used to handle the curtail struggle issues in our own administrative system that finally gave birth to the Amnesty program.
There is nothing that is difficult for us to comprehend in terms of administering the Office of the Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta Affairs and to Coordinate the Amnesty Office. We do have on ourselves, we can be accessible and will not abandon our passion to see that the Amnesty Program succeeds via it’s original master plan.
We call on the President to consider our demands for a cordial and mutual understandable relationship and for the stability of the Niger Delta Region”.