- President Buhari has renewed his promise to end insurgency in Nigeria
- The president made the statement in his reaction to the recent attacks by bandits in the northwest of the country
- Reports have shown that several innocent Nigerians were killed by suspected bandits and cattle rustlers in the last few weeks
President Muhammadu Buhari has condemned the recent attacks by suspected cattle raiders on three villages in Sokoto state where 37 people were killed.
Vanguard reports that the president commiserated with the survivors and vowed to end brutal and remorseless killings of innocent Nigerians.
Legit.ng gathered that the special assistant to the president on media and publicity, Garba Shehu, said Buhari noted that the frequent and large scale killings of poor villagers by gangs of mass murderers would be met with the fiercest force by the security apparatus.
It would be recalled that armed men on motorcycles had on Wednesday, July 17, raided three villages in the district of Goronyo in Sokoto.
A district chief in the state, Zakari Chinaka, said: “The bandits opened fire on the villages and set shops and grain stores ablaze. They took away all the cattle in the villages.
“They operated for two hours unchallenged by any security forces because of the difficulty of the terrain which makes it hard to access.”
A resident of the village of Kamitau, Alu Ibrahim, where 23 people died, also said that the villagers had pursued the bandits in a bid to recover their stolen cattle - key to survival in the poor, remote region.
“The bandits turned their guns on them and killed many. This was the reason for the high death toll from Kamitau,” he said.
It was reported that criminal gangs of cattle rustlers have increasingly targeted rural communities in the state.
Motorcycle-riding bandits had last month killed 43 people in two days of attacks on five villages in Rabah and Isa districts, according police and locals.
Rural communities in the north of Nigeria have for years been terrorised by gangs who raid villages, stealing cattle, kidnapping for ransom and burning homes after looting food supplies.
Villagers have taken up arms to defend themselves, but the vigilantes were being accused of extra-judicial killings of suspected bandits.
The bandit gangs are one of a string of security challenges facing Nigeria, including attacks from Boko Haram faction and renewed clashes between livestock herders and farmers.
This has left the military overstretched and Buhari criticised for failing to protect lives and property, despite promises to boost security.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had previously reported that the state governor, Aminu Tambuwal, on Friday, July 19, warned local vigilantes against harassing and killing innocent Fulanis over bandits attacks in the state.
It was reported that the governor gave the warning while commiserating with families of the 29 people killed by bandits in Kamitau, Malafaru and Ololi communities in Shinaka district of Goronyo local government area of the state.
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