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N74bn in Nigeria's 2012 budget isn't enough for rehabilitation & retraining of ex-miltants - Dokubo
| March 20, 2012
Alhaji Mujahid Dokubo-Asari, the former President of the Ijaw Youth Council and Leader of the Niger Delta Peoples Volunteer Force has criticised the allocation of N74bn in Nigeria's 2012 budget for the training of ex-Niger Delta militants. He said that the amount is inadequate and pointed out that oil production in Nigeria has risen to 2.6 million barrels per day from 680,000 barrels per day before the amnesty programme started and asked that the proceeds from 10-days of oil production proceeds be allocated to the amnesty programme. In his statement he said, âWith all these gains, one expects that the operators of the amnesty project should have been encouraged and applauded. Instead, what we see is rebuke, recrimination and an attempt to scuttle the project by those who contribute next to nothing in the upkeep and maintenance of the Nigerian state but are now calling for a probe into the amnesty project. âThere is nothing wrong with probing a government institution if it is not done out of malice. âIt is important to state that going by the 2012 budget passed by the National Assembly, the amnesty project budget is about N74bn annually. Which means that amnesty project budget for a year is far less than two days oil production. âI believe that the resources allocated to the amnesty project is inadequate and cannot dig deep to satisfy the aspirations and yearnings of the people of the oil-bearing communities. I hereby suggest that for a new start, 10 days oil production proceeds, after removing cost of product and percentage proceeds due to joint ventures partners, should be allocated to the training and education of the people of the oil-bearing communities through the amnesty project.â "Most people will be wondering why I have chosen to speak in favour of the amnesty project, even though I hate the tag amnesty, I know that the managers of the project have managed it so well to the benefit of the recipients. âToday, thousands of young men and women are being trained as doctors, engineers and oil work men and I believe that if this project is expanded and the amnesty tag is dropped, the belief by most of us that we are been criminalized for standing up for our right will be removed and more people will benefit from the project. At present, most people who hitherto, would have been committing crimes in the creeks are now meaningfully engaged, learning and acquiring skills in various universities, polytechnics and technical institutions all over the world. âAs it is said, an idle mind is a devilâs workshop; the people managing the amnesty project have used the project to rehabilitate and readmit the ex-militants who lived the life of criminality into civil society.â

(3) Comment


"The views and opinions expressed in these comment(s) or article(s) do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of NGEX, its partners or its affiliates."
OMOTAYO, J. A.    Lagos, NIGERIA    March 23, 2012
What is in N74 billion? Because we run budgets in trillions, this converts to N0.074 trillion, thus appearing as an insignificant figure. But when viewed in millions, the same amount converts to N74,000 millions. In simple arithmetic, it can be argued that at N1 million per head, the same amount will serve 74,000 militants.

I am very sure that all the militants in the Niger Delta region will be less than a 15,000 - about one-fifth of 74,000. Then, it can be further stated that on the average, the Fed Govt grants N5 million per militant per year. I can agree with Mr. Asari Dokubo that the allocation is small if he can answer the following questions: (1) How many university professors earn N5 million each per annum in Nigeria? (2) How many universities cost up to N5 million (appox $30,000) per annum per foreign student in Nigeria and overseas? (3) What is the average level of a Fed. Govt staff who earns N5 million per annum as total pay package? (4) If an unemployed militant earns N5 million per annum or N416,666.67 per month, how much is he expected to earn when he starts work as a university graduate in a Fed Govt ministry or agency?

In my opinion, Mr. Dokubo did not do his home work well in this regard. God save Nigeria.
Enaboifo Osagie    Nairobi, Kenya    March 22, 2012
What do we expect, when FGN rewards criminalty? Has Dokubo ever done a hard days job in his life? With all the free money that these oil thieves have been paid (in the name of empowerment), what have they done with it for their people?
bighead    delhi, india    March 21, 2012
Dokubo Asari you re a thief
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