With hundreds killed in Nigeria’s Zamfara State by bandits this year alone, the Federal Government has decided to send a 1000-strong force to stop the attackers.
The security force comprising the army, air force, police and the civil defence have been assembled to launch ‘fierce attacks’ on the bandits terrorising villages and towns in the state.
According to a statement by the Senior Special Assistant to the President (Media and Publicity), Garba Shehu said the Air Force has begun the deployment of fighter aircraft to Katsina, the airport closest to Zamfara.
According to him, the Nigerian Air Force has begun the deployment of fighter aircraft to Katsina, the airport with the closest proximity to Zamfara, to make for immediate and effective response to the menace of the bandits.
“This had not been possible in the past because there was no fuel depot in Katsina, but NAF has devised a way around the problem,’’ he said.
He said: “the government had to go to this extent because of the limitations of conventional surveillance as the use of satellite technology could make the task of NAF less problematic.
“Following directives from the President, at the weekend, the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshall Sadiq Abubakar, was in Gusau where he met the Deputy Governor of the State.’’
The president’s aide said that while in Gusau, Abubakar reiterated the Buhari’s pledge that he would never abandon victims of attacks to their fate.
“He also reaffirmed that security remained one of the cardinal pillars of his campaign promises and no leader would be happy to see his own citizens killed by criminal groups across the country.”
Shehu recalled that since his election, the president had kept faith with his promises to re-equip and motivate the country’s military and other security services.
He also observed that “the army and other security services are now better equipped and motivated to face the challenges of their responsibilities”.