Hundreds of commuters and motorists plying the East-West Road along Mbiama axis of Rivers State were on Monday left stranded owing to the gridlock caused by protesting ex-Niger Delta militants over unpaid allowances.

The former agitators are also demanding the immediate sack of Coordinator of the Presidential Amnesty Programme, Prof Charles Dokubo, over his inability to address their problem.

A spokesperson for the aggrieved ex-militants, Ebi John, said Prof Dokubo’s reign has brought untold hardship on them.

He said, “Mr President, it worrisome that under your watch you have continued to allow corruption to thrive at the Presidential Amnesty since Prof Dokubo was appointed.

“He is misusing the fund allocated to the programme and refusing to pay vendors and contractors who are ex-agitators on different vocational skills. 

“All trainings have stopped both for freshers and empowerment. Supply contracts are been issued without recommendations from the reintegration department, delegates are been shortchanged.

“Dokubo has abandoned the core objectives of the amnesty programme to enrich himself and his cronies with impunity.

“We, the repented ex-militants of Phase 3 have therefore taken it upon ourselves to give the President and the entire country a deadline of seven days for this issue to be addressed.

“Failure to do so will lead us back to the creeks where we will resume bombing of pipelines and consequently shut down all activities in the Niger Delta region.”

In a related development, some ex-militants from Delta, Bayelsa and Edo states have dragged Prof Dokubo, the Amnesty Office and the Federal Government before the Federal High Court, Yenagoa, over their non-inclusion in the programme. 

The aggrieved ex-militants in a suit marked FHC/YNG/CS/102/2013 accused Dokubo and others of their non-inclusion in the Presidential Amnesty Programme since 2011.

At the resumption of hearing on Friday, the absence of the presiding judge, Justice Jane Iyang, stalled the progress of the case.

Court clerks however, told the counsel to the plaintiff that further hearing on the suit will be fixed between December 11 and 12, 2019.

 

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