- The Niger state government disagreed with Senator David Umaru over the number of people killed in a recent bandit attack in the state
- Senator Umaru had reportedly put the casualty figure at 70
- The state government, however, described the figure as inciting, saying only 12 people were killed
The Niger state government on Sunday, June 16, said only 12 people were killed by bandits at some villages in Shiroro local government area of the state.
According to Daily Trust, the permanent secretary (cabinet and security), Aliyu Isah Ekan, in a statement, described as inciting, the casualty figure of 70 claimed by Senator David Umaru.
Meanwhile, the head of Relief and Rehabilitation of the Niger State Emergency Management Agency (NSEMA), Salihu Garba, had, in an interview with Daily Trust on Wednesday, June 12, put the casualty figure at 47.
“As we speak, 47 bodies were recovered and buried. Out of the number, 19 were from Kwaki, including that of Sarkin Pawa, who was shot and later died,” Garba was quoted to have said.
The permanent secretary did not, however, react to the NSEMA’s claim but described Senator Umaru’s figure as grossly exaggerated, spurious “and an unfortunate attempt to make to make Niger state look unsafe in the eyes of the world.”
He stated: “It is pertinent to put the record straight in respect to the banditry attack on suburb communities of Allawa town. First, the death toll before the swift intervention of the military joint taskforce was 12 with 22 wounded and not 70 as purportedly claimed by David Umar.”
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Meanwhile, an earlier report by The Nation, also quoting Senator Umaru, puts the casualty figure at 62.
The newspaper reports that the senator said apart from the 62 people that lost their lives, about 1,000 others were displaced.
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