A COMMUNIQUE ISSUED AT THE END OF A THREE-DAY ORIENTATION WORKSHOP ORGANIZED FOR THE BENEFICIARIES OF AMNESTY PROGRAM OF THE BENUE STATE GOVERNMENT, TODAY, 6TH NOVEMBER, 2015.
The stakeholders of the amnesty program of the government of Benue State appreciate the policy posture of His Excellency, the Governor of Benue State, Samuel Ortom, particularly as it pertains the amnesty program promised during his inauguration ceremony.
In fulfillment of this promise he took proactive steps and with the gracious approval of President Muhammadu Buhari in conjunction with the clergy and traditional rulers, he has recorded remarkable achievements as follows:
Recently through the persuasion and prayers of spirited true Benue people over 400 arms and thousands of ammunition were collected and recorded.
To properly rehabilitate and reintegrate the beneficiaries of the amnesty program into the wider society the Governor approved a three-day orientation workshop between November 4th and 6th, 2015.
The entire population of the repentant souls who have genuinely embraced the amnesty program is 556 people comprising Katsina-Ala, 284; Gboko; 60; Kwande, 32; Ukum, 22; Konshisha, 6; Ushongo, 31; Vandeikya, 31; Logo, 18; Guma, 8; Makurdi, 18; Gwer, 12; Buruku, 12; Agatu, 16; Apa, 2; Ogbadibo, 1; and Ado, 3.
It is now crystal clear that the amnesty program of the government of Benue State is successful. To sustain the success, the stakeholders came up with the following suggestions for the way forward:
1. That there should be a legislation giving legal backing for the amnesty program in Benue State.
2. The government should establish state and local government offices.
3. That the beneficiaries will have to go through classification exercise to enable the amnesty office have a computerized database detailing beneficiaries’ chosen career options, counselors’ agreed options, classification agreed options, and requirement for chosen options.
4. That the state government should establish Integrated Farming Center, IFC, for the beneficiaries of the amnesty program.
5. That the state government should establish Amnesty Skills Acquisition Centers in the three senatorial zones of the state.
6. That the beneficiaries of the amnesty program in their respective localities should form drug-free clubs in collaboration with the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA.
7. The government should put in place counseling centers in the three senatorial zones of the state for the beneficiaries.
8. That the government of Benue State should extract serious commitment from governors in the neighboring states of Nasarawa, Taraba, Enugu, Cross River and Kogi, in order to avert spillover effects of cross border crimes into the state.
9. That the beneficiaries of the amnesty program be recruited into a Civilian Joint Task Force, CJTF, to be closely monitored by government for intelligence gathering.
10. The Benue State government should approach both bilateral and multilateral agencies for collaboration in the implementation of her amnesty program.
1. Professor Charity Angya, Chairman.
2. Barrister Ajinge Saa, Secretary.
3. Professor Nicodemus Ochani Agbulu, member.
4. Mr. S K Ayado, member.
5. Mr. Terwase Akwaza, member.
6. Nkeka Louis Monday, member.
7. Kajo Mark, member.
8. Alex Pinga, member.
9. Achiga Dominic, member.