Enormous windows of employment opportunities have been provided for ex-agitators in the oil-rich Niger Delta region to thrive, the Office of the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP) led by Major General Barry Ndiomu (rtd), has said.
From vocational training centers, to opportunities in Federal Government agencies, and incentives for viable SMEs, Freston Akpor, S.A. Media to the PAP Interim Administrator, says the innovative ideas initiated by Ndiomu will guarantee the socio-economic sustainability of ex-agitators and young people in the Niger Delta
“Under General Ndiomu, a total of eight hundred and forty-seven (847) delegates are undergoing training in the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) in various ICT specialized fields with certification in digital marketing, e-mail marketing, social media marketing, computer appreciation, search engine optimization as well as technical and computer writing.
“Similarly, the PAP is sponsoring seventy-five (75) pilots and aircraft engineers to South Africa and France for type-rating as part of the Programme’s aviation training scheme which General Ndiomu is very passionate about. A breakdown of the figure indicates that thirty-five (35) delegates are pilots while forty (40) are billed for aircraft engineering.
“A major boost to that initiative was the launching of the PAP Cooperative Scheme with an initial sum of one point five billion naira (#1.5bn) as seed money in the account with an additional one hundred million naira (#100m) operational fund to be solely managed by the ex-agitators. The cooperative scheme has an eminent jurist, Justice Francis Tabai, a retired Justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria as chair of the board with a team of experienced consultants to assist in nurturing the cooperative into fruition. This will create a conducive environment for small businesses to grow to become the catalyst for economic development in the Niger Delta,” he stated.
On the vocational training centers designed to provide skills for the teeming youths in the region when completed, he emphasized that the Ndiomu-led PAP has cleared monies owed contractors to facilitate the completion of five vocational centers across the region.
“Relevant higher institutions of learning, training institutes and development partners have undertaken spot assessments to re-evaluate existing infrastructure, update software and service equipment including those left at Boro Town after it was burgled to bring the centers including an additional one to be sited in Bayelsa up to speed and eminent take-off. The management under General Ndiomu has also cleared all debts related to ongoing training schemes,” he maintained.
On sanitizing the PAP database, Akpor explained that “Further verification of the payment list revealed that certain beneficiaries had multiple accounts linked to their BVNs. In total 513 beneficiaries had 1370 accounts on the payment list linked to their BVNs. Other anomalies were that of certain accounts not linked to their BVNs, this group had a total of 2601 accounts”.
“To rectify those irregularities, a portal was created, (_stver.osapnd.gov.ng) by PAP for the affected beneficiaries to log in and those with multiple accounts linked to their BVNs were to choose just one account in order to have their payments regularised. A total of 1561 have been cleared and paid in full to date and presently, multiple account fraud has been eradicated from the payment list,” he said.
He added that under General Ndiomu’s watch, the PAP has provided employment for a critical number of young graduates from the Niger Delta in line with the vision of the PAP, thereby reducing the culture and cycle of dependency and indolence.
“The Presidential Amnesty Programme has gained a huge mileage from September last year through the initiatives introduced by General Ndiomu and his managerial acumen has impacted positively on the Programme. Unfortunately, the lies and blackmail will not deter the Interim Administrator from doing what is right by the majority of ex-agitators and the people of the Niger Delta.”
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