The Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta, Kingsley Kuku, has advised beneficiaries of the amnesty programme to continue to ensure sustainable peace in the Niger Delta region.
This is contained in a statement issued on Sunday in Abuja by Daniel Alabrah, the Head of Media and Communications of the Presidential Amnesty Office (PAO).
It said Mr. Kuku, who is also the PAO Chairman, gave the admonition in his end-of-year message to the beneficiaries in Abuja.
The statement quoted Mr. Kuku as saying the former agitators in the region would have contributed immensely to the growth of the Nigerian economy by keeping faith with the amnesty deal.
“The Nigerian government, on its part, has remained committed to the educational, vocational and capacity development of the beneficiaries as a guarantee for a better future for them and the region.
“The Goodluck Jonathan administration has not wavered in its commitment to ensuring the success of the amnesty programme.
“So far, no fewer than 19,000 Niger Delta youths have been trained or are in training in Nigeria and in almost 20 other countries in various fields.
“In 2014, we plan to surpass our target in formal education and vocational training of the beneficiaries,” it said.
The statement also said the presidential adviser cautioned the region’s youth to shun overtures from “desperate and disgruntled politicians’’ who were bent on reversing the gains of the amnesty programme.
“Youths in the region should not fall for such desperate politicians’ ploy.
“They must not allow the Niger Delta regress into violence again, or allow themselves to be used by politicians, who will later dump them to their fate.
“The present administration has succeeded in giving hope to a lot of the youths through the amnesty programme, after they were used and dumped by politicians in the past”, the statement quoted Kuku to have said.