Former Nigerian militants clash with police

07:59, July 08, 2010      

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The former militants from Nigeria's Niger Delta region on Wednesday clashed with the police as they made for the country's capital, Abuja to protest against the leadership of the committee handling their rehabilitation.

Numbering more than 700, the former militants were stopped in Gwagwalada, a suburb of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) as they demanded for the sack of Chief Timi Alaibe as the chairman of the Presidential Post Amnesty Committee.

Nigeria's late President Umaru Yar'Adua granted amnesty to the militants to renounce their agitations to pave the way for their rehabilitation and the development of their area.

Aso Tambo, the leader of the former militants, told newsmen that their mission was to present their challenges in the implementation of the post amnesty program to President Goodluck Jonathan.

Tambo called for Alaibe's sack on the grounds that his continued stay as the chairman of the committee would frustrate the government's efforts at restoring peace to the region.

He accused Alaibe of not being sincere and truthful to the former militants who had willingly surrendered their arms.

"We are here to present our problems to Mr President, having been deprived of our amnesty rights by the Alaibe-led committee," he ssiad.

"We have satisfied all the conditions needed for documentation but our efforts have been frustrated by Alaibe in spite of several consultations with him," he added.

"He has over the period given us several stories over our rights, so we are no longer interested in his stories, hence we are in Abuja to see Mr President," Tambo said.

The group leader said his group was not documented following late disarmament after the October deadline given by the government.

He said Alaibe was informed of the circumstances behind their late disarmament and had promised to incorporate them in the exercise.

The clash led to a traffic snarl on the busy Lokoja-Abuja road from 4 a.m. to 1 p.m. local time.

Source: Xinhua


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