Olusegun Samuel in Yenagoa
Former militant leaders from the Niger Delta region have written a protest letter to the National Security Adviser (NSA), Major General Mohammed Babagana Monguno (rtd), over the alleged attempt by the Interim Administrator of the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP), Major General Barry Ndiomu(rtd), to scuttle an ongoing suit against 15 companies.
The ex-militant said the PAP boss was allegedly using his office to arm-twist the Amnesty office to pay N3.8billion for jobs not done.
According to the ex-militant leaders, despite the fact that there are various cases in different courts against the Amnesty Office, the Amnesty boss had allegedly refused to file a defence as done by its predecessor against the accused 15 companies due to an alleged issue of exchange of gratification which is meant to settle the case and allow the federal government to pay the companies for jobs not executed.
But a close aide to the Presidential Amnesty boss, who pleaded anonymity, described the petition against his boss as “frivolous and absurd,” saying those who purportedly signed the petition are only desperately trying to stop the end to the Presidential Amnesty programme which had become their cash cow over the years.
He said: “Major General Barry Ndiomu is committed to the mandate handed to him and will not allow any distractions from disgruntled and fraudulent people.”
The ex-militant leaders led by Boma Inewariku, Gabriel Atumani Victor, James Ebiaredei Collins and others had called on the NSA to investigate and suspend the Interim Administrator and appoint the most senior civil servant to take over the running and administration of the programme pending the outcome of the investigation against the interim administration.
According to the petition, which was signed by Boma Inewariku, “Our demand for the immediate suspension of Ndiomu as the interim administrator is in view of the fact that there is an allegation of bribery and connivance to embezzle amnesty programme funds against the interim administrator with a claim that the National Security Adviser, Major General Mohammed Babagana Monguno (rtd), will be settled.
“We wish to bring to your notice that it is no news that there are numerous cases pending against the Presidential Amnesty Programme in different courts across the country, but of most important are the 15 cases filed against the Amnesty programme, where these companies are all controlled by one alter ego individual who is claiming payments of over N3.8 billion for contracts allegedly done by these companies.
“It is important to state that the alleged contracts awarded to these companies were done without any due process and against all known procedures and the said contracts were allegedly awarded by the late Prof. Charles Dokubo. May we also inform your humble self that the immediate-past interim administrator in the person of Col. Miland Dixon Dikio (rtd) stood for justice and resolved to diligently fight and also defended against these corrupt and fraudulent contracts allegedly awarded to the under listed 15 companies, which matter is still pending in courts.”