Armed youth in coastal communities in Ondo State are trooping out to lay down their arms and ammunition, and embrace an extended amnesty programme. Correspondent Ayodeji Moradeyo reports that authorities and representatives of different militant groups are monitoring to ensure only real armed youth benefit from the amnesty.
The extended amnesty programme for armed youths in Ondo State is recording considerable success, with massive turn out of militants to the five collation centres.
The centers in Igbekebo, Arogbo, Ugbo-Nla, Ajapa, and Igbokoda, all in Ilaje and Ese Odo Local Government Areas of the State, are flooded by armed youths.
They have been going to the centres to submit their arms.
Some of the arms laid down by these repentant militants include pump action rifles, Dane guns, live ammunitions and locally made artillery weapons.
The State Deputy Governor, Agboola Ajayi, who doubles as the Chairman of the State Amnesty Committee, toured the collection centres with other members and he is delighted with the level of turnout of the repentant armed youths.
He called on those still in hideouts to utilize the window of opportunity offered by the government.
The Commanding Officer of the Nigeria Navy Forward Operation Base, lgbokoda, Navy Captain Chindo Yahaya, also described the turnout as impressive.
One of the repentant commanders of the armed youths, Osipapa Take Lion, commended the Federal and the State governments for the privilege given them to lay down their arms.
The Ondo State Governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu had on the 9th of November, issued a 21-day ultimatum to the armed youths to submit their arms.
The amnesty programme was part of requests made by the kidnappers of the six students of Igbonla Model School, Epe Lagos State.