A prominent traditional ruler in the Niger Delta and the Pere of Gbaramatu Kingdom in Delta State, HRM Oboro Gbaraun, has lauded the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP), for raising over 500 graduates in his kingdom.
The king said some of the graduates bagged first class in their various disciplines observing that the scheme had boosted the manpower capacity of his kingdom.
Gbaraun spoke on Monday at his palace when the Interim Administrator of PAP, Col. Milland Dixon Dikio (rtd), paid him a visit.
Dikio was in the area to inspect the Maritime University where PAP was planning to enroll some of its delegates for studies.
The monarch commended Dikio for his various initiatives, saying the people of Gbaramatu were optimistic that with him in the saddle, they would produce more graduates, who would compete with their counterparts anywhere in the world.
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He said: “We are proud of the amnesty programme because of what it has done for us as a people. We have benefitted immensely from the scholarship scheme. In the 80’s and 90’s, the number of graduates we had was nothing to write home about but today we have more than 500 graduates.
“We also commend you (Dikio) for what you are doing. In the past, some people were using the scholarship scheme to benefit themselves but that has changed under you and we thank you”, he said.
In his remarks, Dikio said he was making a second visit to Gbaramatu Kingdom to see for himself the state of the Maritime University and also reiterated his message of economic restoration to the people.
He said: “The thrust of my coming today, is to visit the Maritime University to see things for myself and also for you to hear from us and advice us as we move on. We know you are a man of great experience and wisdom.
“We are also here to restate the message of economic restoration. We are having a summit in Warri and the focus of the summit is to restore the economic well-being of the Niger Delta. The region like you know is blessed with a lot of abundant resources beyond oil and gas. New opportunities have also been created in the region.
“We want to harness the resources to strengthen our economic base. We have to be abreast with education and technical skills, point people to so many other things that are readily available and does not necessarily need government control.
“So our message is that of handshake, economic handshake to achieve what we want to achieve”.
Dikio, who visited the temporary and permanent site of the Maritime University was received by the people and he assured them that the PAP would work with other institutions of government to make the university one of the best in Africa.