Defence & Security

Zamfara inaugurates security committees to tackle banditry

By Paul Michael

Governor Bello Matawalle has inaugurated four security committees to tackle the banditry and other security challenges in Zamfara State.

Jamilu Iliyasu Magaji, Press Secretary to the Governor, in a statement, said the committees include Special Committee on Intelligence Gathering on Banditry activities, Management Committee on Operations of the Community Protection Guards (CPG), Committee on Prosecution of Banditry Related Offences, and State Security Standing Committee.

According to the him, “Governor Bello Matawalle said the establishment of these Committees is part of the tireless efforts of his Administration to address the over a decade old problem of Banditry confronting the State and other states in the Northwest zone.”

The Governor explained further that it is on record that his administration has explored all workable options to address the issue of banditry and other related crimes in the state.

He said the options include dialogue, reconciliation and disarmament strategy, regular engagement with Federal Government on the issue of security, collaboration with the neighbouring States and the authorities of Niger Republic, and shutting down of mobile telecommunication networks to give Security forces the leeway to take the battle directly to the bandits’ fortresses.

The Government recalled that his administration has provided a settlement popularly known as RUGA for Nomads and has made provision of logistical support to security forces including vehicles and drones.

He expressed confidence that the Committees inaugurated would further boost the State Government’s efforts to combat the dreadful challenge, in both the short and long run.

Governor Matawalle said the Committee members were selected and appointed based on their track records of performances, and urged them to do a thorough job to accomplish the intended goals.

He added that 20 brand new Hilux vehicles and 1,500 motorcycles have been provided to the Committees to commence operations in earnest.

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“We are aware of misgivings expressed in some quarters regarding the new measures, particularly the decision to encourage members of the communities suffering almost daily from the inhumane aggressions from the bandits to acquire firearms to defend their communities.

“As those entrusted with the safety of lives and property of the people, we will do everything possible to uphold this responsibility within the ambit of the law.

“We are also aware that the security forces are doing their best to combat this formidable challenge, their efforts are however, hampered by lack of adequate modern warfare equipment and the dearth of personnel.

“Our decision to mobilise people to secure their communities is therefore for the people to complement the efforts of the conventional Security forces in dealing with banditry and fishing out informants, pointing out that the acquisition and usage of firearms by members of the general public who desire to do so would be governed by the Nigeria Firearms Act,” the Governor stated.

In an acceptance speech on behalf of the Committees inaugurated, the chairman of the State Security Standing Committee, DIG Mamman Ibrahim Tsafe (Rtd) assured the Governor of their readiness to justify the confidence reposed in them, so as to accomplish the intended goals.

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