By Ndubuisi Francis
The Presidential Amnesty Office Wednesday suspended six officials from its Peace Building and Conflict Resolution Unit over allegations of fraudulent dealings in the documentation of Phase Two beneficiaries of the amnesty programme.
The directive for their suspension was handed down by the Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta/Chairman, Presidential Amnesty Programme, Hon. Kingsley Kuku, following alleged confessional statements by one Aso Tambo and some other Phase Two leaders of the former Niger Delta agitators (ex-militants).
A statement endorsed by the Head, Media and Communications, Presidential Amnesty Office, Mr. Dan Alabrah, said the affected officials are Marshal Konoun, Kennedy West, Peter Ajube, Beggi Erepade, Okuba Wenikefe and Tony Amende.
“The office alongside security agencies have commenced investigation into allegations that officials of the unit colluded with Tambo and others to doctor allotted slots and the account details of beneficiaries,” the statement said.
About 57 leaders of the former ex-militants under Phase Two of the Amnesty Programme were arrested by security agencies in Abuja following threats by them to breach the peace in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) over the payment of Transition Safety Allowance (TSA).
Their arrest was occasioned by what the Amnesty Office described as, “the incessant harassment and intimidation of officials of the office, including the Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta and Chairman, Presidential Amnesty Programme, Hon. Kingsley Kuku.”
At a meeting with officials of the office in Abuja, the leaders of the ex-militants had threatened to disrupt social and economic activities in sensitive governmental places in Abuja if their request to have the TSA proposed for 6,166 persons enrolled in the second phase of the programme was not immediately paid out directly to them and not to all the enrolled persons as enshrined in the 2012 budget.
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