Ex-agitators under the Third Phase Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP) have called on President Muhammadu Buhari to confirm the appointment of Col Milland Dixon Dikio (retd) as the substantive coordinator of PAP.
Rising from their emergency meeting over the weekend in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State capital, the ex-agitators joined other Niger Delta stakeholders that have made a similar call recently.
According to them, Dikio had demonstrated capacity, commitment and courage to reposition the core values of the programme.
The third phase national chairman and deputy spokesperson, Strategic Communication Committee (SCC), Tonye Bobo, said they scored Dikio high on performance after evaluating his activities at the stakeholders’ meeting.
He said since the assumption of office, Dikio had boldly reformed the programme for the benefits of the ex-agitators despite resistance from corrupt elements and enemies of the region.
‘Within one year in office the Interim Administrator of the programme has brought the programme closer to the beneficiaries by carrying everyone along in the scheme of things and changing the mindset of delegates to be focused on the positive end results of the programme,’ he said.
‘Dikio has also changed the perception of delegates from petty wrangling that had always led to incessant blocking of the East/West road and other protests that have put the delegates in a bad light.
‘Within one year in office, Dikio has introduced policies and programmes that will benefit ex-agitators, through Train, Employ and Mentor (TEM) model. These drastic reforms led to relative peace and the optimal production of oil and gas in the region.’
Bobo commended Dikio for prompt payments of ex-agitators monthly stipends appealed to him to keep doing the right things.
He said since all the responsible stakeholders and groups from the region such as the Pan Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF), the Ijaw Youths Council (IYC) Worldwide, the Ijaw National Congress (INC) and many others, had endorsed Dikio, President Buhari should not hesitate to confirm his appointment.
Bobo also called on persons ganging up against Dikio to retrace their steps, saying the region could no longer afford to return to business as usual.