Amnesty office probes looting of Kaima Vocational Training Centre

Inaugurates Special Investigative Panel

The Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta and Coordinator, Amnesty Programme, Prof. Charles Dokubo, has inaugurated a special Investigation panel to investigate the looting of Kaima Vocational Training Centre.

A statement by the Special Assistant, Media to the Amnesty Office, Murphy Ganagana stated that the Federal Government was ready to unmask and prosecute the perpetrators of the mindless looting of empowerment centre aimed at impacting the Niger Delta positively.

Speaking on Monday in Abuja at the inauguration of a Special Investigative Panel to probe the invasion and looting at the central warehouse of the Presidential Amnesty Programme Vocational Training Centre in Kaiama, Kolokuma/Opokuma Local Government Area of Bayelsa State, Dokubo gave assurance that perpetrators of the nefarious act who also vandalised property at the training facility about three weeks ago, would be brought to justice.

He expressed shock at the conduct of the invaders whom he said overwhelmed the military and other security personnel on guard and brazenly embarked in an orgy of looting of items meant for distribution to residents of communities

Dokubo noted that but for an instruction passed by the authorities to the security forces against shooting at the invaders; several lives would have been lost, giving the opposition an opportunity for incitement of communities in the Niger Delta to violence a few days to the presidential and national assembly elections.

He said: “As I eventually gathered, there were almost 3,000 persons gathered at the place at any particular time for three days. So even if the soldiers and other security forces deployed had decided to shoot at the persons involved in this wanton looting, how many people would they have killed or how many persons would have survived?

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“I leave it to the Special Investigative Panel to truly appraise the roles played by the military and other security agencies in Kaiama on that day. On my part, I was not sent to the Presidential Amnesty Office by Mr. President to kill Niger Deltans.

“I do not regret not asking the soldiers, police and other security agencies deployed to Kaiama to shoot at sight persons seen or caught looting. But I want the perpetrators of this nefarious act severely punished according to laid down laws of our great nation,” Dokubo said.

He dismissed the conspiracy speculations making the rounds on the incident, expressing optimism that the Special Investigative Panel which was set up after due consultations would unravel the truth and identify the perpetrators and their sponsors.

He added: “I have even read a report on an online platform that curiously suggested that I orchestrated the looting of assets that were so dear to me and a facility that I had invited very important personalities to attend the commissioning the next day. This claim, I dare say is not only preposterous but mischievous.”

The statement by Ganagana indicated that the Special Investigative Panel is chaired by S. A Songonuga, a retired Brigadier-General, and has Mr. Dodoye Aripko (DSS), CSP Paddy Ogon (Police); Mrs. Ene Cynthia Ogbe, and Pastor Reuben Wilson, as members, while Mr. Unyime Eyo will serve as secretary.

The Amnesty office said that the panel will among other things ascertain the remote and immediate causes of the incident and identify persons remotely and directly connected with the looting and vandalisation of the facility.

The panel will also ascertain the exact cost of training equipment, empowerment start-up packs and other looted items, as well as appraise the security situation in the training centre prior to the looting, and ascertain if the incident could have been prevented, the statement said.

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