President Muhammadu Buhari has met with Governor Aminu Masari of Katsina State over the rising wave of banditry in the state and advised criminals to surrender now or face a “disgraceful and violent end.”
According to a statement issued by Garba Shehu, Senior Special Assistant to the President (Media & Publicity) in Abuja on Saturday, the meeting took place at the State House, Abuja on Thursday night, with the president assuring people and government of Katsina State of renewed efforts and review of operations to improve the security of lives and properties in the state and other parts of the country.
Buhari said bandits who have committed crimes against innocent citizens in the state and across the country, will not be spared.
President Buhari warned bandits to surrender their weapons, or face “disgraceful and violent end,” adding that more decisive military operations against bandits in Zamfara, Sokoto, Niger, Katsina and Kaduna states will be undertaken.
President Buhari commiserated with Governor Masari over the loss of lives from attacks by bandits, which include district head of Yantumaki, Alhaji Atiku Maidabino and APC chairman in Batsari Local Government Council, Alhaji Abdulhamid Sani Duburawa.
In the same vein, Sokoto State Command of the Nigerian Police have denied an allegation made by a former Chairman of Sabon Birni Local Government Area, claiming that the bandits that attacked the area a few days ago were suspected Fulani herdsmen.
The former commissioner (name withheld) in an interview published by one national daily ( not Tribune) had alleged that the attack that left over 79 people dead was carried out by Fulani herdsmen.
Reacting to the allegation, the spokesman for the state police command, ASP Muhammad Abubakar Sadiq, said the investigation team set up by the State Commissioner for Police, CP Ibrahim Sani Ka’oje, over the incident was yet to submit its report.
The Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to Govenror Mohammed Bello, said the people of the state, especially the opposition should stop playing politics with people’s lives.
He denied the knowledge do the Tribe of the attackers, saying maybe the former chairman knows more than he does.
He described the killings as most unfortunate where some people invade the place and killed people for fun.
“The concern of the Governor is to stop such things from happening again, he was in the place three times, held meeting with the President on same issue.
“To confirm to his efforts, the Chief of Airfoce was in the state over same issue and the Federal Government has also promised to establish Mobile Police units in the area”
He however commend the efforts of the Federal Government, saying Governor Tambuwal also called on the federal government to recruit more personnel in the security outfits for the benefits of the people.
Meanwhile, investigation conducted by Sunday Tribune confirmed that there is increase in the security situation in the affected area.
A resident of Sabon Birni, Samaila Isa, who spoke with our correspondent on telephone confirmed that there is large presence of security personnel in the Eastern part of the state.
He explained that in the last few days, both Airfoce personnel as well as regular personnel such as Police, Army, Civil Defense officials are working tirelessly in the area.
“I can confirm to you that security agencies are dealing with those bandits and I believe if the tempo can be sustained, this area will soon be free of bandits”
Corroborating the statement, a lawmaker representing Sabon Birni North constituency in the state House of Assembly, Alhaji Aminu Boza, lauded the Federal Government for its quick response to banditry attack in his constituency.
Boza said this while addressing journalists in Sokoto on Thursday, He also commended the state government’s response to the attack, describing it as encouraging.
“Today as I speak with you, we have noticed a lot of commitment by security agencies in addressing the security challenges bedeviling the eastern zone of Sokoto.
“We experienced heinous activities by bandits that crippled our social and economic lives and has led to the loss of hundreds of lives and property worth billions of naira.
“However, the bloodiest attack happened on May 27, where more than 70 people were killed during bandits’ attacks across the eight Local Government Areas (LGAs) of the zone.
“Presently, I am at ease seeing the security formation in the area as directed by President Muhammadu Buhari,” he said.
The lawmaker appreciated Gov. Aminu Tambuwal for his dedication toward uplifting the living condition of the people in the affected areas.
He urge people to sustain prayers toward addressing the ugly situation and continue to remain vigilant and report suspicious movements to relevant security.