Teddy Oscar, Abuja
The Federal Government has budgeted the sum of NN35.830 billion to reintegrate the ex-militants that were enrolled in the Presidential Amnesty Programme in 2014.
The special adviser to the President on Niger Delta, Mr. Kingsley Kuku, disclosed this on Friday while defending his 2014 budget before the House of Representatives’ Committee on Niger Delta.
Kuku, who hinted that the sum of N23.625 billion would be required for the payment of N65, 000 monthly stipends to 30,000 ex-militants, added that N3.825 billion would be needed to cover the cost of operations in the Presidential Amnesty Office.
“It is the projection of the Amnesty Office that 2,200 transformed ex-agitators will be placed in either formal education or vocational training in the fiscal tear 2014. The budgetary figure for the placements of the estimated ex-combatants in reintegration centres is based on the following key assumptions:
“(That) 50 percent or 1,100 delegates have opted for vocational training. It is estimated that local training centres will be able to absorb 700 of them. The balance of 400 delegates will be trained offshore. (That) 50 percent or 1,100 persons have opted for educational and 500 will be trained locally and 400 will be sent to offshore schools. The balance of 200 will be placed on foundation or pathway programmes that will be conducted within the country to prepare the delegates for placements for universities offshore,” he said.
He revealed that out of the 30,000 statutorily enlisted in the Presidential Amnesty Programme, a total number of 18,000 delegates have either graduated or are currently in either vocational or educational training facilities within the country and abroad.
“With this figure, we are left with a total number of 11,200 delegates awaiting placements in reintegration facilities,” he added.
Kuku also informed the lawmakers that in 2013, the sum of N38.909 billion was appropriated for already demobilised ex-agitators, adding that in compliance with the United Nations Disarmament, Demobilisation and Reintegration (DDR) Charter Code, a total sum of N546 million was provided for in the 2013 budget to take care of the reinsertion/transition safety allowance for 3, 642 transformed ex-agitators and their leaders enlisted in the third phase of the amnesty programme.
He disclosed that in 2013, a total of 2,400 delegates were successfully deployed to vocational training centres both within the country and offshore.
“Of this number, 671 delegates have since graduated, earning globally recognized certificates in such fields as marine technology, marine mechanic, commercial driving, agriculture, drilling, boat building, oil and gas technology, automobile technology and of course aviation,” he said.
Speaking further on the activities of his office, Kuku disclosed that in 2013, 834 delegates were placed in about 100 universities across the world while a total of 459 delegates were placed in private universities in Nigeria for the 2012/2013 session.
Meanwhile, Engr. Darius Isiaka, supervising minister for Niger Delta ministry, on Friday informed the committee that the sum of N22 billion has been proposed in the 2014 Budget for the completion of the East West road.
He said that the money would significantly offset liabilities in order to meet the 2014 target for the completion of the East West road.