Defective Military Operations In Zamfara Made Sokoto Vulnerable To Attacks — Tambuwal
Sokoto State Governor, Hon. Aminu Tambuwal has accused the military of making the state “very vulnerable” to the activities of bandits flushed out from Zamfara State.
No fewer than 23 travellers were burnt to death last Monday when some bandits opened fire on a bus in the state.
This is coming as the pastor of the Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA), Nariya, Igabi Local Government Area of Kaduna State, Rev. Dauda Bature has been killed by his abductors after 30 days in captivity.
Following the killing of the passengers by gunmen in Sokoto, President Muhammadu Buhari dispatched a delegation comprising heads of security agencies to the state.
The National Security Adviser, Major General Babagana Monguno (rtd), Director-General of the Department of State Services (DSS), Yusuf Bichi, Inspector-General of Police, Usman Alkali Baba, and Chief of Defence Intelligence, Major General Samuel Adebayo, are part of the delegation.
Speaking when he received the delegation, Tambuwal blamed the situation on the influx of bandits displaced by clearance exercises carried out by Operation Hadarin Daji in Zamfara State.
The governor alleged that the resultant effect of the exercises had led to attacks and kidnappings “in broad daylight” in some parts of the state.
“Operation Hadarin Daji, the precursor of the escalation of tension and crisis in Sokoto State was carried out without any blocking force around the neighbouring states, particularly Sokoto State,” he said.
“Also, the timing of the operation, whereby, unfortunately, our security agents do not have enough equipment to move and curtail and contain those that would pander towards Sokoto State didn’t help the timing as well. So, the timing and the way the operation was carried out left Sokoto very vulnerable.
“It does appear as if those bandits pursued from Zamfara State have relocated to Sokoto State. This is a very serious call for concern.
“There is a need for more boots on the ground. I am familiar with the situation at the centre, but I believe that something can be done, and, that should be done urgently and expeditiously because our situation is getting out of hand.”
Tambuwal added that the state is also trying its best to curtail security challenges.
“Here in Sokoto State, you can verify this from the heads of security agencies, there is nothing they have asked of us that we have not done. Nothing,” he said.
“Since the commencement of this administration, we have given security personnel in Sokoto State not less than 500 vehicles. We are also doing whatever it takes in terms of funding from our end despite the lean resources that we have as a state.”
In his response, Monguno, who led the delegation, restated the federal government’s commitment to flushing out banditry and protecting citizens from all forms of criminal activities in the country.
“We are in Sokoto on a specific mission instructed by President Buhari, to condole you and the very good people of Sokoto State as well as the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar III, over the unfortunate incidents that have been occurring over the last couple of weeks,” Monguno said.
“Mr. President is conveying his profound condolence over the loss of all the citizens who have departed.
“He also wants us to express his deep sympathy as well as his determination that the perpetrators of this gruesome, wicked activities are apprehended and brought to book.
“He has charged to make sure that all the relevant agencies do not rest until we can flush out the perpetrators of not just these last two incidents that occurred, but also previous incidents.”
Meanwhile, the pastor of the Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA), Nariya, Igabi Local Government Area of Kaduna State, Rev. Dauda Bature, has been killed by his abductors after 30 days in captivity.
Dare-devil bandits have also invaded parts of Sabon Tasha GRA, Oil Village, and Anguwan Bulus areas of Kaduna metropolis, abducting eight residents including a policeman and his family.
Bature was abducted from his farm on November 8, 2021.
His abductors were said to have demanded N5 million ransom.
It was gathered that after negotiations, his wife went to deliver an undisclosed amount of money to the criminals in the bush.
It was further learnt that after collecting the money, she too, was kidnapped by her husband’s captors.
The bandits released her on December 6, 2021, to go and look for more money for her husband’s release.
Chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Rev. Joseph Hayab, confirmed the killing of the clergyman.
“It was yesterday (Friday) that the information came when our pastors were at a conference and the leaders of the church went to officially tell the wife that her husband is no more so that they don’t continue negotiations with the bandits,” Hayab said.
Meanwhile, residents of Sabon Tasha, Oil Village, and Anguwan Bulus, areas of Kaduna metropolis had sleepless nights as bandits visited them with terror on Thursday and the early hours of Saturday, abducting eight people.
The hoodlums were said to have invaded Sabon Tasha GRA and Anguwan Bulus simultaneously in the early hours of Saturday.
Residents said the bandits who came at about 1 a.m. were repelled by soldiers who responded to distressed calls.
The hoodlums were said to have burnt a house located at Tanko Kokwain Street after they forced their way to the house only to discover that there was nobody around.
Confirming the GRA attack in a statement on, Mohammad Jalige, spokesman of the Kaduna State Police Command, said the bandits, invaded GRA and Oil Village at about 1 a.m. yesterday.
He said: “The Kaduna Police Command through Divisional Police Officer Sabon Tasha Division Kaduna acted on a distress call received from a good Samaritan to the fact that some suspected armed bandits numbering about 30 with some in military gears and bearing dangerous weapons, were making ferocious effort to break into a residential area at Sabo GRA in Chikun LGA of the State in an attempt to commit the heinous crime.
“Unfortunately, it was discovered that the bandits operated simultaneously with one at oil village in the same Sabo location where they kidnapped a woman and her four children to an unknown destination.”
He said further that investigation into the two incidences had since commenced while efforts were being made to rescue the victims.