people & power
Crude amnesty
We look at the conflict between militants and the Nigerian military in the Niger Delta.
Last Modified: 29 Aug 2010 17:17 GMT


On August 6, 2009, the government of Nigeria offered an amnesty to militants in the Niger Delta region. 

Over the following 60 days 20,000 emerged from their camps accepting the government's unconditional pardon and the promise of cash payments and training in return for their weapons.
Militant groups composed mostly of young men unable to find jobs first emerged in the early 1990s.

Many also voiced a political agenda, protesting against environmental degradation and the underdevelopment and sub-standard living conditions of the Delta's roughly 30 million residents.
Militant attacks had a direct impact on Nigeria's oil production and even global oil prices.

But militants were also dying in army attacks across the Delta, leading eventually to both sides entering secret talks about an amnesty to end the conflict.

Al Jazeera's Juliana Ruhfus returned to the Niger Delta to see how effective this amnesty strategy has been.

This episode of People & Power can be seen on Wednesday, August 4, at the following times GMT: Wednesday: 0600, 1230; Thursday: 0130, 1400, 1930; Friday: 0630, 1630; Saturday: 0330, 2030; Sunday: 0030, 0530; Monday: 0830.

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