The National Security Adviser, Babagana Monguno has raised an alarm of N712 billion being wasted and unaccounted for under the Niger Delta Amnesty Programme (NDAP).
The NSA made the disclosure when Milland Dikio, interim coordinator of the programme paid President Muhammadu Buhari a visit in Abuja on Friday October 9.
Commenting on the programme which was initiated during the administration late President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua to stop the violence in the Niger Delta region, Monguno said;
“The predatory instincts of certain individuals came into the fore and the programme was turned upside down and as a result of this, like the administrator has just said, there was a lot of corruption, waste, mismanagement within this period. N712 billion was wasted, basically unaccounted for, and this is due to so many issues — corruption being at the fore.
“Now, we realised that if the focus of the people who are supposed to drive this programme is to capsize the programme by allowing their own personal interest to come in, then we are all going to be in trouble because if the Niger Delta is in trouble, consequently, it will extend to the rest of the federation.
“Therefore, I had to take this step to advise Mr President that this waste cannot go on. This programme is not supposed to be an open-ended programme; there is no place on the surface of this earth where programmes that are supposed to be palliatory will continue forever, at the end of the day becoming a big problem and entanglement for the government.
“Therefore, we decided to take immediate action by bringing in someone who can take a deep look at these programmes, what resulted to it being flawed — a person with vast experience and we all know the experience of Colonel Dikio in this type of issue.”
Dikio also revealed that the NDAP owes contractors over N71 billion. He said;
“Immediately after the disarmament phase, challenges including endemic corruption cropped in and derailed the programme.
“Lack of enough funds and corruption were blamed for impeding the effective operationalisation of the programme.
“Regrettably, the programme has now been running for 11 years without the desired benefits delivered to the ex-agitators.
“Rather, the ex-agitator database was dishonestly corrupted, and several contracts were awarded in total disregard of need and procurement processes.
“Consequently, the programme is currently owing contractors the sum of N71,411,646,210.68. This informed Mr. President’s decision to overhaul the programme, aimed at ensuring that the dividends of the amnesty programme reaches its original target beneficiaries.
“Reports have shown that not much progress has been recorded in some aspects of the demobilisation and reintegration components of the programme. To address this, the need to focus on education and vocational training in ways that the benefits are channeled through a transparent, accountable, corrupt-free and institutionalised process is imperative.
“The programme as currently structured is not sustainable and cannot deliver the desired long-term benefit to the region and the country.
“Consistent with the strategic objectives of the federal government, the vision of the administrator is to refocus the amnesty programme to its original mandate of development and security of the Niger Delta region.”
Romain Grosjean shares update from hospital after horror Formula 1 crash
Romain Grosjean, 34, has shared multiple updates from the hospital after he miraculously survived a horror crash that broke his car in half and saw it go up in flames while he was still in it.
The Haas-Ferrari driver said from the hospital that he is “loving life” after suffering only burns in Sunday’s horror Formula One crash.
His car crashed into a barrier early on during the Bahrain Grand Prix and his vehicle subsequently exploded into a fireball.
Viewers were stunned to see the French-Swiss veteran walk away from the wreckage seemingly injury free after race stewards quickly intervened with a fire extinguisher.
It was later revealed that Grosjean would need to stay in hospital overnight to be treated for burns on his hands.
With large bandages visible in his latest update on Instagram, the driver wrote: “Thank you so much for all your messages. Loving life.”
In an initial post, he said: “Hello everyone, I just wanted to say I am OK – well, sort of OK.
“Thank you very much for all the messages. I wasn’t for the halo some years ago, but I think it’s the greatest thing that we’ve brought to Formula 1.
“Without it I wouldn’t be able to speak with you today.”
Missing 3-year-old girl found safe and reunited with her mother in Rivers
A 3-year-old girl has been found safe and reunited with her mother after she went missing for six hours in Diobu area of Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital.
The Commander of Diobu Vigilante group, Godstime Ihunwo, who confirmed the incident on Sunday, November 29, said that the child went missing due to the ”carelessness” of her mother.
“Thanks b 2 God almighty as me & my boys in conjunction with 3 God-fearing & kind hearted men, whom out of their efforts made our job easier in rescuing one Miss Chinaza Ikpe, a 3 years old girl child that went missing 6 hours ago, at about 1pm 2day 29/11/2020, just bcs of d carelessness of her mother Mrs Chinasa. d Child has been handed over 2 d mother by me COMR. GODSTIME W. IHUNWO, d C.S.O./Commander Diobu Vigilante, RUMUELECHI COMMUNITY M/3 UNIT” he said.
Niger workers to resume suspended strike action on Tuesday
Workers in Niger state chapter of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), have disclosed that they will be resuming their suspended indefinite strike action over the decision of the State Government to pay the November salaries of civil servants on a percentage basis.
Leaders of the organized labour in the state said the strike will resume on Tuesday, 1st December 2020 should the government fails to address their grievances.
The NLC disclosed this in a letter addressed to Governor Dani Bello through the Niger Head of Service and signed by NLC Chairman, Comrade Yakubu Garba and TUC Chairman, Comrade Tanimu Yunusa.
“We write on behalf of the State Executive Council (SEC) of Niger State Organised Labour to convey to your esteemed office the harmonized position of the affiliate unions as follows:
“That Niger State Government should refund the slashed June 2020 2020 salaries to desirable civil servants latest Tuesday, 1st December.
“That the discussion on payment of outstanding October 2020 salaries of local government workers must be conclusive on or before Tuesday, December 1, 2020.
“That the proposal by Niger State Government to pay November 2020 salaries of LGAs and state workers on a percentage basis is unacceptable and vehemently rejected.
“That failure of the government to address issues 1, 2 and 3 above, the Organized Labour will be left with no other option than to resume the earlier suspended indefinite strike action effective midnight of
Tuesday, December 1, 2020.”