n African Journal on Conflict Resolution - The civilianisation of ex-combatants of the Niger Delta : progress and challenges in reintegration

Volume 16, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1562-6997


The focus of research on the Niger Delta has shifted considerably from the large-scale violence affecting the region, to the effects of the post-amnesty era which followed the introduction of the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP) by the government in 2009. Unfortunately, the emergent literature on the amnesty topic has been pessimistic in its reductionist assessment of the whole programme as a mere 'cash-for-peace' or 'settlement' exercise which can only lead to a fragile peace in the Niger Delta. This paper, being a product of an in-depth investigation of the programme through direct observations and field interviews, presents a different perspective. The paper demonstrates the capacity of the amnesty programme to facilitate and sustain peace in the troubled Niger Delta, with specific focus on the reintegration aspect of the PAP. The paper shows that the reintegration programme has recorded some positive progress which has not been well captured in the literature. Indeed, these achievements are a clear sign of the potential of the PAP to bring about a lasting peace in the Niger Delta. Furthermore, the paper analyses the current challenges bedevilling the programme. Following the highlighted challenges, the paper offers recommendations on how the reintegration programme can be properly utilised to sustain peace in the Niger Delta.

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