Governor of Zamfara State, Abdulaziz Yari, has kicked against engaging bandits that have been attacking states in north east in dialogue, describing them as deceitful.
Rural farming communities in Zamfara, Kaduna and Katsina states have been facing an increasing number of bandits attacks, kidnappings and killings, for years. The bandits steal cattle and kidnap for ransom.
Yari said, “Well, I have told my people that that will no longer take place during my time. Because, I have done that three times but it did not work. This is in the sense that we know their capacity. For instance, during the first dialogue, they invited some of our team, army, DSS, police and my chief security officer as well as some representatives of traditional rulers and we have seen what they have.
“They are in control of the kind of weapons that the Command in Zamfara State does not have. In one armory alone, they have over 500 AK47, we saw it. Our people were even given chance to take pictures. But when we said we will dialogue, offer amnesty, that they should surrender their arms, I can tell you till date we did not get up to 90 AK47, so it is a deceit. That is why I said no more dialogue during my tenure.
“During dry season they will look for dialogue because they know the security can get access to anywhere in the forest and they have no place to hide. But when the rainy season comes and the forest becomes thicker, they will return to their normal practice. That is why I said there has to be show of force before anything else. I know that in any war, eventually you have to come to the table and dialogue but the situation we are right now sincerely speaking, dialogue is not needed at this point in time.”
Speaking to State House Correspondents after meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari, Yari who backed the call by his counterpart in Katsina, Aminu Masari for a regional collaboration against the bandits, said three times he has tried dialogue but failed because the bandits were not sincere with government’s effort to find lasting solution to the problem, said it is time for show of force.