|Government provides assistance on rehabilitation; counselling and reintegration into society, of former fighters of Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND)
FOR ORAL REPLY
QUESTION NO: 189 (NO3771E)
PUBLISHED IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NO 32-2011 OF 18 OVTOBER 2011
Mr KS Mubu (DA) to ask the Minister of International Relations and Cooperation:
Whether the Government is providing any assistance in the
(b) counselling; and
(c) reintegration into society, of former fighters of
(i) the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) and
(ii) any other specified armed groups in the Niger Delta in Nigeria; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details?
- (i) No.
Under the auspices of the Bi-National Commission (BNC), the Federal Government of Nigeria has never requested any assistance in this regard from the Government of South Africa, but some South African private companies and NGO’s are providing assistance to the former MEND militants in partnership with the Federal Government of Nigeria. To demonstrate its commitment in the Amnesty Programme, the Federal Government of Nigeria joined forces with private institutions and NGO’s throughout the world to train and equip former militants with knowledge on non-violence, peace methods in resolving conflict, education, vocation and entrepreneurial skills.
When the former militants first arrive in South Africa for the transformation programme, they are sent to the NGO called the Centre for Ubuntu Nonviolence Conflict Reconciliation (CUNCR), under Rev Dr N Tshawane. The CUNCR works in partnership with the Martin Luther King Nonviolence Transformation Training Centre. At this centre the militants partake in different programmes to change their mindset. The centre has since trained 20 000 former MEND militants.
After the CUNCR the militants are sent for training to different sectors in South Africa organised by private companies