Military Onslaught In Zamfara: Dislodged Bandits Flee Towards Southern States

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Military Onslaught In Zamfara: Dislodged Bandits Flee
Towards Southern States by AnonPoet : 5:19am
Military onslaught in Zamfara: Dislodged bandits flee
southwards, gunmen strike in Kogi, Kaduna, Ekiti
There were strong indications on Monday that bandits
fleeing the military onslaught in Zamfara State were
moving to states in the South.
Top security sources, who confided in our correspondents,
said security agents in other states had been alerted to be
on the lookout for the fleeing bandits.
It was also gathered that the South-West states had put
the regional security outfit, Amotekun, on the alert
following intelligence reports that bandits being dislodged
from Zamfara State were fleeing southwards.
The Amotekun Corps commanders in Ekiti, Ondo, Osun
and Oyo states, in separate interviews with our
correspondents, stated that residents of the states had
been told to be vigilant and guard against infiltration by
the fleeing hoodlums.
They said this as gunmen invaded the Kabba Correctional
Centre in Kogi State, where they freed 240 inmates and
killed two soldiers.
In Kaduna State, suspected herdsmen attacked Peigyim
village in the Zangon Kataf Local Government Area of the
state and killed 12 persons.
No fewer than four travellers were also abducted in Ekiti
State on Monday.
The Federal Government had last week ordered
telecommunications companies to shut down their base
stations in Zamfara State as part of the onslaught against
bandits, who were engaged in ceaseless kidnapping and
killings in the state and other parts of the North-West.
The bandits had also been hit by hunger following the
decision of the state government and neighbouring states
to close regular markets, where they were getting
foodstuffs.
There were reports that many bandits had been killed
during military raids, while others were said to be fleeing
Zamfara State.
A senior police officer, who confided in The PUNCH, said,
“A few days ago, some of the bandits fled to Niger State
and they were dealt with by the military. Some of them are
moving southwards and security agents have been
alerted.”
We envisaged that bandits would take refuge in other
states – Ekiti Amotekun commander
The Corps Commander, Amotekun Corps, Ekiti State, Brig
Gen Joe Komolafe (retd.), said in an interview with The
PUNCH that the agency had always envisaged that the
dislodged bandits would want to take refuge in other
states and was proactive about guarding against their
incursion into Ekiti.
Komolafe said, “We have always envisaged that when
dislodged, they will want to move to other states; that is
why each time we come out, we talk to the citizens to
report strange faces to us.
“We try as much as possible to monitor the routes and
entry points; we know that the criminals may not come by
road or through the main routes to enter the state; it is in
view of that that we always tell our people to report
strange faces to us.
“We patrol the forests; we have people on the farms, who
will tell us when they see strange faces on the farms or
bushes. We try to plead with the people to give us
necessary information about strange faces and unusual
movements.
“Also, we have perfect working relationships with
Amotekun in the neighbouring states as well all security
agencies in the state.”
‘We got intelligence that bandits were trying to relocate
to Ondo forests’
On his part, the Ondo State Amotekun Corps Commander,
Chief Adetunji Adeleye, stated that the security outfit had
received a security report on the fleeing bandits.
He said Governor Rotimi Akeredolu had given an order for
the corps to put in place necessary security measures in
the 18 local government areas of the state to prevent the
bandits from striking in the state.
Adeleye stated, “We have got information from a reliable
intelligence report that the fleeing bandits are coming, that
they intend to stay in the forest to cause mayhem and that
they are closing in seriously. The source told us that the
bandits want to start with Ondo State as a frontline state.
“So, with that, we have put serious intelligence on the
ground across the state and our primary aim is to prevent
any infiltration and attack. We don’t even want them to
strike before we get them. So, we are at every local
government area, every major town and inside the forest.
“On the other side too, we are deploying all means to
ensure that if they come to this state, they will meet their
waterloo. Right now, our intelligence is on the ground at
every nook and cranny of the state. And we are monitoring
keenly. That is what Mr Governor has directed me to do
and I will do it diligently.”
Oyo Amotekun beefs up security at boundary with Kwara
The Director-General, Amotekun Corps, Oyo State, Col
Olayinka Olayanju ( retd), said the outfit’s personnel were
patrolling boundaries of the state aggresively to prevent
hoodlums from relocating to the state.
The DG said, “We knew that and our men are already on
the lookout for the bandits, other criminals and strange
faces, especially at our boundaries.
“We are at alert and our men are carrying out operations
regarding this at Irepo, which is the boundary of Oyo and
Kwara states, to make sure that the bandits do not
relocate to our state.
“They will be stopped. Our men will pick them up. We
won’t allow criminals to relocate here.”
‘Osun does not have ungoverned areas’
On his part, the Corps Commander, Amotekun Corps, Osun
State, Brig Gen Bashir Adewinbi (retd.), stated, “They
(bandits) can’t come to Osun, because the state does not
have ungoverned areas.
“Everywhere is being monitored in Osun State in
collaboration with the police and with additional 750
vigilantes recently recruited by the state government to
support Amotekun.”
Tactics won’t be divulged at the moment – Defence
Headquarters
When contacted to comment on reports that the bandits
being dislodged from Zamfara State were fleeing to other
states, especially southern states, the Director of Defence
Information, Major General Benjamin Sawyerr, neither
confirmed nor denied the reports.
He said, “Operations are ongoing. Tactics and strategies
are not to be divulged at this moment.
“The operations are being conducted in line with the
operational directives as well as contingencies.
“The North-Central, North-East and the North-West will
soon have reasons to thank the Armed Forces of Nigeria
for a job well done.”
He, however, declined to answer further questions put to
him on the matter.
Gunmen abduct four travellers in Ekiti
As the Amotekun Corps beefed up security in the South-
West, gunmen on Monday waylaid travellers on the
Ayetoro Ekiti-Otun Ekiti Road and whisked no fewer than
four persons into the forest.
Sources said two buses conveying passengers from the
Otun Ekiti end of the road were attacked by the gunmen,
who abducted four passengers, while the others escaped.
A source said one of those, who escaped, told him that
the gunmen took away four passengers from the two
buses.
Another source, who said he got information about the
attack from hunters, said, “The hunters were called that
some kidnappers were operating on the Ayetoro Ekiti-Otun
Ekiti Road.
“But before they got there, the gunmen had
commandeered the two buses into the bush. At that point,
we could not tell the number of people taken into the
forest, but the buses were abandoned there.
“I advised the hunters and the security agents, who arrived
at the scene later, that the kidnappers would have gone
towards Otun and that they could not have gone very far
by then.
“Definitely, they were the ones, who operated on the
Ayetoro-Ewu Road on Sunday. The Sunday operation was
not successful and that was why they waited around to
carry out this one.”
According to him, the kidnappers, on realising that they
had missed their targets on Sunday, might have resorted
to attacking commercial motorcycle riders and shot
indiscriminately in the air to scare people off.
“An Okada rider was stopped at gunpoint and the
hoodlums took all his valuables, while another Okada
operator escaped into the bush. The kidnappers fled when
they noticed that the other Okada rider had escaped,” the
source added.
The Police Public Relations Officer in Ekiti State, Sunday
Abutu, who confirmed the incident, said, “We heard the
information and we have deployed our men there.
“There was a kidnap incident this morning (Monday). I
cannot yet confirm the number of people abducted. It
began on Sunday evening when some suspected robbers
attacked a man, whom the police thereafter rescued. But
this morning, we learnt that the suspects were the ones
who abducted some road users. The police are on their
trail.”
S’West PDP asks Buhari to resign over killings
Meanwhile, the Peoples Democratic Party in the South-
West, on Monday, called on the President, Major General
Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), to resign from office following
his alleged inability to stem the tide of killings across the
country.
The Publicity Secretary, South-West PDP, Chief Sanya
Atofarati, who lamented that the killers were now turning
the heat on the military and other security agencies, thus
leaving the citizens helpless and hopeless, advised the
Federal Government to seek foreign help in the interest of
peace and development of the country.
“It is gross incompetence on the part of the Buhari-led All
Progressives Congress Federal Government that Nigeria
has become a graveyard,” he stated.
Atofarati said this in a statement titled, ‘Killing spree: Why
Buhari must resign now’, made available to journalists in
Ado Ekiti in reaction to recent attacks by bandits and
gunmen on military formations as well as police stations
and personnel.
He stated, “Between 2015 and now, more than 20,000
Nigerians have lost their lives due to the inability of the
government to protect the lives and property of the
citizens, ranging from jihadist Fulani herdsmen to Boko
Haram to bandits/highway kidnappers.
“It is safe to say that the APC government remains
insensitive to the welfare of Nigerians, otherwise, by now,
Buhari should have voluntarily resigned or cry for help.
“Nigeria is now a country, where the agencies saddled
with the responsibility of securing the citizens have
suddenly become weaklings and incapacitated; a country
where governors’ convoys are attacked at will, monarchs
are kidnapped even under the President’s nose in his
home state; a country where there is no war but mass
burial weekly!
“It is high time Nigeria sought foreign help to curb
insecurity, lest we are all captured.” ,,