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Tackling Zamfara Insecurity Key To Ending Banditry In Northern Nigeria — Gov Lawal

Zamfara State governor, Dauda Lawal, has said that the state has become the epicenter of the banditry crisis plaguing northern Nigeria, and resolving the insecurity there was crucial to bringing peace to the entire region.

He disclosed this to State House correspondents on Tuesday after meeting with President Bola Tinubu at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, on Tuesday.

He painted a dire picture of the situation in his state, saying despite efforts by Zamfara State government, bandit attacks have continued unabated in several local government areas of the State.

“Zamfara has become the center of banditry as we speak today, and if nothing is done in Zamfara State, I don’t think we will be able to solve the situation in the entire northern Nigeria,” Governor Lawal said.

The governor said he appealed directly to President Tinubu for a surge of military personnel and equipment to be deployed to Zamfara State to tackle the security crisis head-on.

He expressed confidence the president understood the urgency, saying: “I have his assurance that something drastic will be done to take care of the situation as soon as possible.”

Lawal noted that most recent high-profile kidnapping cases, like the Kuriga schoolchildren abduction, have been traced back to Zamfara, where the victims were held by their abductors.

He said this has underscored the need to change the “narratives” around insecurity in the state.

While Zamfara recently launched a Community Protection Guards (CPG) to work alongside federal troops, the governor acknowledged that as a state government, “we don’t have control over the military as well as the police.”

Hence, he said, there was the need to secure federal backing and intervention.

He said Zamfara’s local guards were envisioned to combine forces with the military and police, providing their local knowledge of the terrain to joint operations.

“These people understand this terrain better than even the military and the police,” Lawal stated.

But a collaborative enforcement effort will not be enough without a major reinvestment of resources and manpower from Abuja, the governor stressed.

“That’s why I’m here today to get the blessing of the President to do something very, very drastic,” he added.

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