National News

NASS tasked to restructure Niger Delta intervention agencies

By Enaibo Asiayei

The National Assembly has been tasked to restructure the policy framework governing the operations of agencies and structures established for the development of the Niger Delta region.

This was part of the demands of the Niger Delta Amnesty Vendors Association (NDAV), contained in a communique issued in Warri Delta state on Wednesday and signed by seven members of its executive council, including its President, Comrade Tari Okosi and Secretary, Eferebo Sylvania.

The body also appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to address the issues currently bedeviling the smooth running of the Presidential Amnesty Programme, especially the issue of due payment of stipend asking that the budget of the programme be reviewed upwards.

It, however warned those stoking crisis in the Niger Delta region in the name of agitating for a better run of the amnesty programme to cease actions as such would be a distraction to the programme and plans of the Coordinator of the office, Professor Charles Dokubo.

The group, which said it had been engaging aggrieved ex-agitators in the region to forestall further breakdown of law and order, said the new Coordinator of the Amnesty Orogramme, Prof Dokubo, has done much, within the short period he has piloted the amnesty office and should not be distracted.

Itemising its demands, the NDAV said “the task of sustainable peace and development in the region should not be compromised for personal greed and politics of sentiments. However, while we continue to engage aggrieved persons on productive discussions on possible approaches to addressing several of their pending issues from the previous administration, we therefore urge all stakeholders of the region and beneficiaries of the programme to support the good works of Mr President, through the office of his Special Adviser on Niger Delta Affairs and Coordinator of the Amnesty Programme.

“We passionately appeal to the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari to address the bottlenecks surrounding the disbursement of funds to the Amnesty Office and also consider increasing the budget for the office.

“The National Assembly should, as a matter of urgency, readdress the policy framework governing the operations of the other Niger Delta interventionist agencies such as the NDDC and the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs to adequately address the immediate needs of the people.”

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