The Phase 3 Ex-agitator leaders of the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP), yesterday, barricaded the busy East/West road along Ughelli, Ughelli North local government area of Delta state for over several hours on alleged exclusion of its members and non payment of monthly N65,000 stipends to members by the amnesty office under the administrative head of Col. Milland Dixon Dikio rtd.
The peaceful protest which started at about 6am yesterday left a lot of travellers stranded, as the ex-agitators in their hundreds displayed placards with inscriptions, “Buhari give Dikio matching order to pay our monthly stipends” “Dikio pay our stipends or give us back our guns” “We have been documented since 2011 but being denied of stipends, we will react if..” “Dikio is playing politics with our stipends.”
The Delta state Coordinator of the Phase 3 Ex-Agitators, Gen. Marshal Atake who spoke to newsmen during the protest, said the continuous exclusion and non payment of the monthly stipends to members is totally unacceptable by the group, adding that if the amnesty office insist on paying their stipends, then federal government should release back to them their guns.
The group had lamented that since the documentation of the phase 3 amnesty in JTF headquarters Sector 1, Effurun barracks, Warri, since 2011, the amnesty office has not deem it necessary to do the needful, rather, they continue to post them that the office is on it without implementing the N65,000 monthly stipends or enrolling them into the amnesty programmes while others are benefitting.
Atake said the phase 3 ex-agitators of the Presidential Amnesty Programme embraced federal government amnesty sometime in 2011 and this was followed by capturing and documentation, but expressed surprised that since about eleven years ago they were documented, no person from Delta has been paid stipend while few other states receive their payments till date.
Speaking further, Atake said, “The documentation exercise started during Kingsley Kuku’s administration but there was this flimsy excuses that their machines developed fault and promise to complete the documentation and implimentation exercise to the final point of payment but as we speak nothing is done till date while others are enjoying the benefits of the programme.
“We have written severally to the amnesty office when Kingsley Kuku was there and had also written under Col. Milland Dixon Dikio as the administrator of the Presidential Amnesty Programme, but they are not either here or there, hence we are calling on President Buhari to give Dikio a matching order to include the phase 3 ex-agitators in the monthly payment and all the programmes that other members benefitting from.”
Other ex-agitators, Gen. Daniel Egole and Gen. Williams Emoghene in their separate statements said they want their monthly stipends, as according to them they were disarmed eleven years ago, they have not been paid a dime, asking why the discrimination when it was the same gun others dropped that phase 3 that they have also dropped, urging the amnesty boss, Col Dikio rtd to pay them their stipends.