The Interim Administrator, Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP), Maj.-Barry Ndiomu, has introduced counselling and mentoring of ex-agitators to curb all forms of unrests especially street protests.
The Chairman, PAP Strategic Communication Committee (SCC), Nature Dumale, said the initiative was introduced by Ndiomu to help ex-agitators deal with stress-related challenges that could push them into violent reactions.
Speaking in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, after a programme tagged, Resilience Building Workshop, organised by PAP and had all members of the strategic committee as well as other ex-agitators in attendance, Dumale said it was part of Ndiomu’s efforts to eliminate all threats to the existing peace in the Niger Delta.
Dumale said the PAP boss adopted the strategy after realising that mental exhaustion, lack of alternative dispute resolution mechanism and knowledge gap among ex-agitators and other stakeholders were the reasons for some violent actions in the region.
Describing the workshop facilitated by Dr. Olusola Ephraim-Oluwanuga, as a product of sheer vision, he said 150 ex-agitators attended it.
Dumale said following the importance of the knowledge gathered from the workshop, the amnesty office was making efforts to organise it in the nine states of the Niger Delta.
He said: “Every effort is being made by the current Interim Administrator, PAP, Maj.-Gen. Ndiomu (retd) to completely stop all forms of threats to peace in the Niger Delta. The Interim administrator wants to curb anything that could bring renewed violent agitation in the region.
“This training on resilience building is necessary, timely and completments other programmes introduced by the interim administrator. He came up with the establishment of cooperatives to transform ex-agitators from stipend earners to entrepreneurs.
“So, this training makes delegates to understand that no matter the challenges encountered in their entrepreneural efforts, they should not give up but continue to push on to realise their objectives. So this training coming before the kick-off of the cooperative programme is a welcomed development.
“We thank the interim administrator for the wisdom in rolling out this training at this time. We plead with him to take the training to all the nine states of the Niger Delta and to make it compulsory for all ex-agitators. We are grateful to him and we appreciate his leadership”.
Other participants described the training as life changing saying if they had been exposed to such opportunity earlier, they would have avoided some past mistakes.
They commended Ndiomu for his initiatives in PAP and appealed to him to extend the programme to all the states in the region.
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