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General News of Tuesday, 28 September 2021


Amnesty programme uncovers payments to 400 ghost beneficiaries, others

Milland Dixon Dikio Milland Dixon Dikio

Interim Administrator of the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP), Col. Milland Dixon Dikio (rtd.) has disclosed that it discovered over 400 ghost beneficiaries, who connived with some government officials in the ongoing verification exercise.

Dikio, who vowed to remove ghost beneficiaries from the PAP’s payroll, said his vision for the programme was anchored on promoting entrepreneurship and building a peaceful Niger Delta region that would be a reference point as an ideal place to live and do business due to its climatic stability.
He stressed that his constant trips to the region would continue as part of strategies to take the programme back to the original owners and ensure that they are part of the execution.

“I am not deterred by those, who have made me their focus of criticism. The reforms we have embarked on are not targeted at anyone or group, but are meant to sanitise the system,” he said.

While calling on all those with complaints to use the available channels including the PAP call centre number, Dikio said he was determined to leave a positive legacy in the PAP.
Following his determination to ensure transparency in the programme, leaders of Niger Delta ex-agitators have endorsed the ongoing cleansing exercise introduced by Dikio.

They condemned the connivance of some leaders of the scheme and government officials to siphon the money meant for the programme, especially payment of allowances to ghost beneficiaries.

The leaders of phases one to three beneficiaries of the programme stated this at the weekend during a meeting with Dikio in Agadagba-Obon, Ondo State.
Among those present at the meeting are, former commanders and representatives of ‘The Big Five,’ namely: Ebikabowei Victor-Ben (Boyloaf) and Bibopere Ajube (Shoot-at-Sight.)

Victor-Ben commended Dikio for the ongoing verification exercise aimed at end fraud in the amnesty system, which had denied many authentic ex-agitators the opportunity of benefiting from the monthly stipends.

Speaking, Ajube decried the incessant petitions and court cases instituted against the amnesty office, stressing that such actions were distracting the current management of the PAP.

He charged leaders of the various phases of the programme to work for the actualisation of Dikio’s new PAP vision to accelerate the development of the region and ensure peace.

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