The kidnappers who abducted the six Senior Secondary School students of Lagos Model College, Igbonla, Epe in Lagos State a few months ago were among the youths that surrendered their arms to embrace the amnesty of the Ondo state government on Tuesday.
The militants were also alleged to be responsible for various pipeline vandalization at Arepo in Ogun State and several attacks in the riverine areas of Ondo State.
The hundreds of the militants were led by their leader, Ogailo Young also known as O.C, to the Collection and Documentation of Arms Centre in Ajakpa Community in Ese-Odo Local Government Area of the state to surrender their ammunition.
They said they willingly dropped their arms and ammunition in order to embrace amnesty of the government and allow peace to reign in the Niger Delta area of the state.
Speaking at the event, Young appreciated the state and the Federal Government for the fresh Amnesty initiative extended to their groups. He said joblessness and poverty as a result of neglect by the government led them to involve in crime.
He said, “If we were asked for the reasons for embarking on this struggle, our simple explanation to the public and other concerned authorities is that it is joblessness, suffering, poverty, oppression and neglect by the government.
“As it got to this point, we did not find life very easy, then we relocated to Ogun State where the government college Ugbonla, Epe school boys were kidnapped whose release led to the present arrangement through the courageous efforts of the deputy governors of Ondo and Delta states.
“We did not kidnap these boys for mere ransom but to negotiate our freedom and full reintegration to normal life”.
The leader of the repentant armed bandits added that they decided to dump their oil bunkering business and hatched another game plan to attract the attention of the government.
In his remarks, the Chairman of State Amnesty Committee and Deputy Governor of the state, Mr. Agboola Ajayi Ajayi, said the exercise was impressive, confirming that sophisticated ammunition was surrendered.
“Looking at the sophisticated guns and ammunition surrendered, I’m happy that they (militants) made promise and fulfil it,” he said
He assured that the Federal Government would fulfil its own promise by providing employment and education programme among others for the repentant militants so as to enable them to be self-reliant.
Ajayi also assured that no one or government will launch an attack on the oil-producing areas of the state after the submission of arms and ammunition by the armed youths.
Source:( Punch Newspaper )