Armed Bandits Have Reasons For Their Actions – Masari
The Executive Governor of Katsina State Aminu Masari says armed bandits have understandable reasons for their actions.
ThisDay reports that Masari is currently in a dialogue with the leaders of bandits terrorising the North-west of the country.
According to the report, the state government believes dialogue is an option to stop the escalating violence in the region, where security forces have failed.
Masari said the move was to find a lasting solution to the violence that had claimed many lives and destroyed properties in the region.
He said the state government was working with its counterparts in the Niger Republic.
The delegates are to meet tomorrow in Jibia Local Government of Katsina State with the leaders of the bandits from two countries to brainstorm on how to end cross-border banditry.
Jibia is a border town between Katsina State and the Niger Republic which is a stronghold for bandits from the Niger Republic.
The Governor made the move after the recent report of bandits from the neighbouring Niger Republic who had struck in Katsina, Zamfara, Niger and Kaduna States.
The closure of borders and the peace deal between the bandits and some northern states have not changed the security situation.
ThisDay quotes Masari as saying that “The move would also review the various approaches so far taken at individual country levels with a view to fine-tuning, re-strategising and strengthening them for enduring peace in the two countries.
The governor said the one-day security meeting will have leaders of the bandits from Nigeria and the Niger Republic, Security Chiefs, Government Officials and other stakeholders present.
The governor would immediately hold a follow up meeting with the Governor of Maradi region in Niger, Mallam Zakari Oumoru and him on the implementation of the agreements, ThisDay quote the Governor.
Masari disclosed that hundreds of bandits from the Niger Republic are now in Nigeria launching deadly attacks in Katsina State, then escape to their country when the security forces search for them.
“This peaceful approach is expected to take centre-stage at our discussion during the meeting because it is a known fact globally now that through a peaceful process, a lot can be achieved.
“Bandits from the Niger Republic have crossed over to Nigeria. Some are committing the crime here; some have a base here and do go and commit the crime in the Niger Republic and come back to Nigeria; that is why in continuation of our peace process we met with the governor of Maradi, Sokoto, Zamfara and me in Maradi with our security chiefs.
“The Government of Maradi State in the Niger Republic has also keyed into the peace process. On Tuesday, a delegation from the Niger Republic and a delegation from Katsina State Government in Nigeria – we meet in Jibia Local Government Area with leaders of the bandits from the Niger Republic to discuss how to end inter-border banditry.”
Masari said the outcome of the meeting would lead to a meeting with the Governor of Maradi State, Alhaji Zakari Oumoru, to end the menace once and for all.
“Now we don’t have banditry attacks in Katsina State; all the attacks are being carried out by bandits in the Niger Republic. So, in this meeting we will ensure that the bandits carrying out these attacks are brought to book for peace to return in the two countries,” he stated.