June 13, 2024

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Ex-militants Threaten To Return To The Creeks

3 min read

John ODHE, Yenagoa

An aggrieved ex-militants group in the Niger Delta under the aegis of Second Phase Ex-agitators Leaders Forum (SPELF) said they have been facing the temptation of return to the creeks following poor handling of the Federal Government Amnesty Programme.
In a statement entitled: A letter of introduction and recommendation and addressed to the amnesty office, the group identified itself as a coalition of ex-agitators leaders of the second batch of the Niger Delta presidential amnesty program, inclusive in the 30,000 beneficiaries across the region.
The ex-freedom fighters, however, noted that they would have since returned to the creeks to resume hostilities but for their high respect for the leadership of the foundation of the Niger Delta struggle.
The statement read in parts: “As a group, we recognize and give preference to the fact that there are leaders and founders of the struggle which is the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND).
“Among those highly respected leaders is the chairman, Dr. Ebikabowei Victor Ben a.k.a General Boylof, and we are also whole heartedly ready to partner with the leadership of the struggle to work in synergy so as to ensure that the aims and goal for initiating the amnesty program is achieved.


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“Over the years, the second phase of the amnesty program has suffered series of complaints rising from non-payments of stipends, training of beneficiaries etc.
“Those are the major issues affecting us as a result of deliberate wickedness done on us by the past administration of the board; adding to the database, names of non-participants of the amnesty program to be first beneficiaries of the struggle, and depriving the original members their legitimate rights of benefiting from the program.
“The past administration has actually tempted a huge number of the second phase agitators to go back to the creeks with evil intensions but thank God for the swift intervention of the second phase ex-agitators leaders forum across the Niger Delta states and the chairman of MEND, General Boylof who has demonstrated leadership in calming the situation.
“Sir, considering the high level of respect and leadership qualities demonstrated by our Amiable Chairman of MEND over the years and also with reference to our last meeting held in Yenagoa on the 4th of March, 2021, resolutions by the Forum were reached as follows:
“We unanimously agreed to maintain the already existing peace in the Niger Delta region and equally agreed that we will stand and defend the interim administration and our amnesty office anytime, anywhere.
“We also agreed unanimously to itemize and handover all our problems affecting us as a group to our Leader, Dr. Ebikabowei Victor Ben to dialogue with the amnesty office.
“We also unanimously agreed that all court matters will be withdrawn from court.
“On this note, we, the second phase ex-agitators leaders forum has unanimously agreed to recommend Dr. Ebikabowei Victor Ben a.k.a General Boylof to be the one to liaise between the present administration and the second phase Niger Delta presidential amnesty beneficiaries to bring lasting solution to our problems.
“We hope to look forward to the present administration having a meeting with him, discussing to see how issues affecting our course will be resolved soonest.”

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