Abiodun OBA      |      

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has ordered security forces to go into the bushes and shoot whoever they see with sophisticated weapons like AK-47.

Presidential spokesman, Mallam Garba Shehu disclosed this in an interview with the BBC. Shehu said the president directed a clampdown on bandits who have refused to surrender. Shehu said the government is resorting to lethal force to rid Zamfara and other northern states of bandits.

“The president has ordered security forces to go into the bushes and shoot whoever they see with sophisticated weapons like AK-47,” he said in the interview monitored by TheCable.

“He ordered that whoever is seen with terrible weapons at all should be shot immediately.”

Shehu also said the Federal government declared Zamfara a no-fly zone following intelligence that arms are being transported to the bandits with private jets.  He said the jets are also used to cart away gold from the state to Dubai, which, according to him, prompted the ban on mining activities also announced on Tuesday.

“These jets are being used to pick up gold that is being mined in some parts of Zamfara and exported. ,” he said.

“There is a Nigerian gold market in Dubai. The government is losing, the people of this country are losing, that’s why it is said that gold mining is banned for those who are not made by the government.”

The ban on mining activities in Zamfara was first announced in April 2017 amid reports that actors going after the state’s gold reserves are fuelling its security crisis.

Meanwhile, North East Governors, yesterday, called on Federal Government to be more proactive and committed to the fight against insurgency and terrorism in the country, saying the current situation suggests that the commitment was not there.

The governors’ position came on a day Arewa Consultative Forum, ACF, asked the Federal Government to also extend to Benue, Taraba and Borno the ‘’no fly zone’’ order placed on Zamfara State by President Muhammadu Buhari, arguing that choppers also drop arms in these states for bandits and insurgents.

In a swift reaction, Benue’s Gov. Samuel Ortom on Thursday commended President Muhammadu Buhari over his directive to security operatives to shoot on sight, anyone illegally in possession AK47 rifles.

 

Ortom gave the commendation in Makurdi when the Chairman Governing Board, Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC), Prof. Adamu Kyuka, paid him a courtesy visit.

“I commend Mr President for his recent order against those bearing AK47 rifles.

“This I am sure will reduce the high rate of criminality, banditry and militia herdsmen attacks on our farming communities.

“I don’t only criticise. I also commend where necessary. And I want to say shame on those sycophants who were bashing me for writing to Mr President because he has finally heeded my advice,’’ the governor noted.

Ortom said Nigeria belongs to all her citizens and only justice and equity anchored on the rule of law could guarantee the unity and stability of the country.

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