The death of Rivers state cult kingpin, Don Wanny reemphasised the point that amnesty to criminals will only work when the persons involved genuinely make a u-turn to lead a normal life.

New Year Day was sad for some residents of Rivers state as families whose loved ones were killed by cultists on their way back from service, mourned their losses.

The killing was the height of the activities of cultists in the state and the government unleashed war on the cult groups.

So much has happened after the incident, including the killing of Wanny’s brother in Edo State.

The government, which had declared members of Don Wanny’s cult group wanted, has also since given conditions to cultists, many of whom are supposed to have been products of the amnesty programme in the state. 


Apparently, it appears the amnesty programme could not achieve its full aim and Bounce News spoke to the Rivers State Commissioner for Information, Honourable Emmanuel Okah on the true situation of things with the amnesty programme and cultists in the state.

He shared a lot about the situation in Rivers State - the activities of the cult group and what the state wants them to do.

Here are a few highlights of what he said.

1.       Return and change your life.

Mr Okah emphasised that the state remains home to every indigene that is patriotic and willing to be law abiding. The state is rich with gas and oil and those who want to work will earn a living, the government official said.

2.       Lead a normal life.

The commissioner lamented that these cultists have their eyes on making large sums of money, and this tendency contributs to the return of cult activities in the state even after amnesty was granted to them. 

They had expected that the government would give them big money to maintain their extravagant lifestyle, but that was not the case after the amnesty programme.  

3.       Do not expect to reap where you did not sow.

Mr Okah told Bounce News that there were jobs in the state for people but the unwillingness of the youths to work because they want quick money has kept them consistently on the path of crime.

"These criminals are used to big money. They are used to kidnapping people and having a field day.

"They are used to robbery. They are used to doing all manner of things and getting away with them.

“So, when you offer them amnesty and say come and live normal life to sweat and eke out a living for yourself, it becomes a big problem. They definitely can’t understand it and they can’t live that kind of life,” he said.

4.       Maintain a culture of wanting to work.

The commissioner believes that when indigenes of the oil-rich state pursue genuine ways of making money, they will find jobs that are consistent with who they are.

Also Read: DSS, Army Gun Down Another Suspected Cultist

He reminded them that no company would want to employ persons that would become liabilities to the employer.

Mr Okah believes that heightened security activities in the state and beyond which led to the killing of Don Wanny's younger brother, Oluchi Igwedibia, in Edo State would yield further result and end the activities of cultists in Rivers State.

However, some other members of the gang that allegedly killed over 20 persons on New Year's day are still on the run.