Buhari orders release of extra N35bn for amnesty programme

Buhari orders release of extra N35bn for amnesty programme
May 06 22:01 2017

President Muhammadu Buhari has ordered the release  of additional N35bn to boost  the Amnesty Programme for  repentant militants in the Niger Delta region.

A statement by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo’s spokesman, Laolu Akande, said the additional fund was the result of recent peace moves made by the Federal Government in the region.

Akande said although the Federal Government had approved a N20bn allocation for the programme in the 2016 budget, President Muhammadu Buhari has now raised the funds to N55bn with a recent release of additional N30bn.

He disclosed that there is also a planned release of another N5bn later.

According to him, the Amnesty Office has now paid up all ex-militants backlog of their stipends up to the end of 2016.

“The release of the additional funds is coming after presidential level interactive engagements in the Niger Delta, where the Buhari administration has enunciated a New Vision for the oil-producing areas based on the presentation made by the Pan Niger Delta Forum to the President when he received leaders and stakeholders from the region last November.

“Subsequently, the President asked his deputy, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, to embark on a tour of the region that saw him visiting several oil-producing states in the country.

“Besides the monthly payment of about N65, 000 to N66,000 to the ex-militants, the funds would also go to the provision of reintegration activities under the Amnesty Programme including payment of tuition for beneficiaries from Niger Delta who are in post-secondary institutions at home and abroad, payment of in-training and hazard allowances and vocational training costs,” the statement read in part.