Nwuche and FYD were never paid N5.7bn by the Amnesty Office

Foundation for Youth Development (FYD) as a Non Governmental Organization committed to the empowerment and development of youth as leaders of tomorrow and also supporting Government efforts in fighting Corruption in order to secure the future of youths, does not ordinarily bother with responding to sponsored media blackmail. However we are constrained to clear the air on some false allegations

sponsored by known political interests that our NGO and our chairman Hon Prince Chibudom Nwuche were paid NS.7BNfor a contract by the Amnesty Programme.

Nothing can be further from the truth as neither Nwuche nor FYDwas never paid NS.7BN for any contract. Rather what transpired was that FYD which was registered and has been active since 2007 was invited by the Amnesty Office in 2012 on account of its track record in empowering youths to assist in the training of ex militants in various vocational skills. Prior to this invitation our chairman was severally prevailed upon by the Amnesty office to act as a mentor to our youths as a prominent figure and stakeholder in the Niger Delta Region. He visited South Africa on the invitation of the Amnesty Office for the graduation of ex agitators who had qualified as pilots and commended them, as well as several other appearances during their orientation preparatory to departure to training programmes overseas. You can goggle and see video clips of the South African graduation aired by Channels Television. Our chairman went out of his way in . whatever concerned the youths of the Niger Delta and the Niger Delta region generally, and has an excellent relationship with the elders, leaders and youths of the region on account of his simplicity, integrity and accessibility.

An initial contract was awarded for the training of 330 ex militants in welding, and marine at Tati University College Malaysia, Haiphong Polytechnics College, Vietnam and the World Maritime University, Sweden. This was completed without hitch and FYDis still owed NS7m, and was commended by the Amnesty office on account of the quality of institutions secured by the chairman and how well the trainees turned out under the Chairman's mentorship.

Thereafter FYD was contacted and directed to provide a sea time training vessel as she had trained 200 students in marine in Vietnam and another 80 in Sweden. Also other vendors had trained nearly 1000 in other maritime institutions, and they had completed the 9 to 12 months theoretical programmes and needed practical sea time experience to be able to secure jobs as sea farers and cadets. A 38 bunk supply vessel was refitted as a training vessel, and duly inspected jointly by Nimasa and the Amnesty Office and approved as such and deployed since April 2013 at the then going rate of vessels of such capacity i.e $13,000 per day. As at November 2016 FYDis owed Ns.4BN on this transaction by the Amnesty Office.

A second batch of 3 contracts for the training of 500 youths in vocational skills was subsequently awarded to FYD and a mobilisation of N2.6BN paid. A few names were forwarded for profiling and preparation of passports after we had successfully secured schools in Vietnam and Malaysia and renovated hostels to accommodate the students. We requested for the- remaining names as you are not allowed to deploy an incomplete list. Whilst this was pending a request came from the Amnesty Office to our chairman that we provide an urgent loan to pay stipends to ex militants, their leaders and manage other stakeholders in the Niger Delta as their allocations was delayed from the Accountant General's office. They claimed that the ex militants will disrupt oil production and the Amnesty programme and the President was aware of the situation and that they were yet to give us the full list and the Mobilization paid was still with us. After long persuasion our chairman in the interest of the Amnesty programme and the stability of the Niger Delta region acceded and we disbursed the loan in the manner and to beneficiaries as directed. We thereafter wrote several reminders for repayment and they kept giving excuses until the change of batons at the Amnesty Office. Inconvertible evidence of these payments in the form of bank transfers and video recordings are available of these transactions and has been• handed over to the authorities.

Inspite of this unfortunate situation where FYD now appears to have been defrauded we still insisted in fulfilling our obligations and requested for the list of trainees to enable us deploy but the Amnesty Office was still not forthcoming. We took the matter to court (Suit No. FHC/ABJ/CS/ 769/2015) in 2015 and requested for specific performance of the contract and the payment of the Ns.4BN owed us on the vessel provided for sea time. The Amnesty office approached us for out of court settlement and the matter was withdrawn in December 2015 and a restructured contract awarded to us on the 8th of July 2016. See attached.

All these facts are in the public domain as FYD stated same in her letter to the National Assembly Committee on Public procurement in its public hearing in June 2016. This is the whole truth, and we appeal to political interests not to unduly seek to criminalise a civil contract in order to tarnish the image of our chairman who is known for his integrity and unblemished record during his tenure in the House of Representatives as the Deputy Speaker. Our chairman has also been a very active player in the oil and gas sector and was very affluent much before he went to serve his people in the National Assembly from 1999 to 2003. We know there are interests who do not like his political profile and want to bring him down, silence or eliminate him at all costs, all in preparation for 2019 but they should please leave this contract transaction out it. There are several other vendors in the Amnesty Programme why is the matter of FVD the only one singled out for media attention by these interests if not to portray us and our Chairman negatively and to dent his unblemished record of public service. These interests are now capitalising on the misfortune and are trying to distort facts to paint the victims as the villain. We are unable to offer more comments or divulge more pertinent facts to buttress our position as the matters are in court and currently subjudice, and we wait to meet anyone with any defence to our case in court.

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Hon. Chibudom Nwuche
Wasiu Akindele
Gloria Stanley-Ngada