June 21, 2024

Ex-agitators ask Buhari to make Dikio as substantive PAP administrator


Nathan Tamarapreye, Yenagoa

The First Phase Ex-agitators who embraced the Presidential Amnesty on Friday appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to confirm the Interim Administrator, Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP), Col. Milland Dixon Dikio (retd), the substantive coordinator.

The ex-agitators said Dikio had been outstanding in the management of PAP as an interim administrator and had the capacity to fully actualise the mandate of the programme if given full powers of a substantive coordinator.

Speaking in Port Harcourt, on Thursday, Secretary, First Phase, Pastor Nature Dumale, said Dikio’s commitment to transforming ex-agitators into independent employees and entrepreneurs through his novel Train, Employ and Mentor (TEM) model had started yielding expected results.

He recalled that recently 346 ex-agitators became the pioneers of TEM following their graduation from a notable skill acquisition facility in Ondo State.

He said 80 per cent of the graduates would be employed by the training firm in line with the provisions of TEM describing Dikio’s initiative as the best solution to the problems of unemployment in the Niger Delta.

He said in the next six months, Dikio through TEM would have ensured the graduation of over 5000 ex-agitators with employable skills and entrepreneurs’ capabilities.

Dumale appealed to Niger Delta elders, leaders, youths and all stakeholders to throw their weight behind Dikio to enable him to actualise his vision for PAP and the Niger Delta.

He described the PAP boss as a rare asset discovered during Buhari’s administration saying the Niger Delta would remain eternally grateful to the President if he would make him a substantive coordinator.

He said: “It is on record that 346 delegates from the Niger Delta region just graduated from Bradama International Skill Works Limited Agadagba Ondo. Out of this number of youths, 80 per cent of them are going to have job placements. They are going to employ them with the same training they have given them.

“We are calling on all Niger Delta leaders, opinion leaders, youth leaders, elders, and politicians to rally around Dikio and give him more support for greater achievements and development in the region.

“The greatest development, you can give to any young man or to any person is to give him skill and not just to give him skill, to also meaningfully engage him so that he can become independent and also become an employer of labour in future.

“What Dikio has done is indeed laudable and encouraging. It is the first time in the history of the Presidential Amnesty Programme that we see this kind of success. His flagship programme called TEM, Train, Employ and Mentor have succeeded. This is the first graduation out of many graduations that will be unfolding in record time.

“Some of the students will be graduating in the next two months. Some of them will be graduating in January, some of them in February and so on.

“We are begging President Muhammadu Buhari to please confirm Col. Dikio retired as the substantive coordinator of the presidential Amnesty programme and Senior Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta Affairs,” Dumale said.

The secretary noted that since Dikio assumed office, he has not apportioned blame to any of his predecessors. but tackled the challenge headlong, adding that Dikio has a courageous character which inspires the ex-agitators.

According to him, Dikio has been developing visions upon visions that have changed the narrative of the region.

“We are appealing to President Muhammad Buhari to please confirm him as the substantive coordinator of this programme so that he will be able to finish the visions he has put in place.

“Over the years we have had people take over positions like this and began to initiate their own ideas. They abandoned what had been done and began to initiate their own concept and at the end of the day, bastardize the entire process,” Dumale said.

He expressed delight that over 250 ex-agitators were being trained by a professional firm in Ogoni on environmental clean-up to deal with oil pollution after which they would be employed by the trainer.

Dumale said they were passionate about the Niger Delta Sustainable Plan, which he said Dikio had started working on to capture the next generation of youths and discourage them from militancy and other vices.

Dikio was on Aug 21, 2020, appointed Interim Administrator for PAP for a one-year tenure which was renewed after one year in 2021.

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