The attention of the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP) has been drawn to a fictitious story making the rounds about a planned sale of thousands of empowerment kits, vehicles and other sundry items that were purchased for beneficiaries of the PAP.

We wish to unequivocally state that the report, which describes the planned sale as fraudulent, is false in its entirety and should be totally disregarded because it is a product of mischief makers who are bent on tarnishing the image of the Interim Administrator of the PAP, Maj. Gen. Barry Ndiomu (rtd).

We at PAP are only responding to these spurious allegations because silence can sometimes be mistaken for consent and we wish to set the record straight.

For the avoidance of doubt, please note that every government department is required to operate in consonance with federal government regulations, that licensed government auctioneers advertise unneeded assets such as old vehicles in national dailies and that this is a standard procedure for legally disposing of federal government property that is no longer needed.

The general public and PAP stakeholders should please be aware that disposal of such assets occurs from time to time and that the current exercise – which will be organised transparently – has absolutely nothing to do with the winding down process that Maj Gen Ndiomu was initially responsible for managing.

It is strange and disappointing that those who are attacking Maj Gen Ndiomu purely because he was appointed to wind down the PAP have chosen to ignore the fact that he has subsequently been able to persuade the Federal Government to rescind this decision and allow the PAP to continue.

In addition. It bears repeating that similar exercise was carried out last September when the PAP disposed of its unserviceable assets in Port Harcourt branch office, nobody raised an eyebrow. Why now?

Again, it is noteworthy that government regulations require that the disposable items must be over five years or the assets must be severely defective and that it would cost more to repair or maintain those items. But above all, the regulations require that the auction must be made public. The PAP management intends to abide strictly to these guiding regulations.

It should be noted that the IA had no input in the decision to auction these unserviceable items. Management had taken this decision after due consultations with the relevant agencies long before the appointment of Gen Ndiomu.

It is wicked and outrageous to assume that Gen Ndiomu engineered the present auction for selfish reasons. Nothing can be more far from the truth.

Fortunately, he is not deterred by the barrage of unfounded allegations that have been directed against him and will continue to work closely with stakeholders in the Niger Delta to sustain peace and promote development in the region.

Thomas Peretu

SA Media to the IA.

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