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Editor's note: In this piece, Abdukadir Sulaiman, a Zaria-based public affairs analyst writes on the lingering bandit activities in Zamfara state.
Recently, no fewer than 40 persons were reportedly killed following attacks by suspected bandits on some villages in Zamfara state. The villages are Wari Tsaune, Gidan Adamu, Gidan Maidawa of Faru, all in the Maradun local government area of the state.
It was also reported that the attacks left hundreds of others, including women and children with various degrees of injury. Also, several cows were said to have been rustled during the attack, and shops in the affected villages were looted by the gunmen. This is a furtherance of the story of "sorrow, tears and blood" which has plagued Zamfara state in the last five (5) years.
Curiously, it was less than a week that Matawalle dumped PDP for the APC that his own local government came under serious attacks. "Who dun-nit"? The answer is not far-fetched.
In this dystopia-like situation, widespread sobriety is expected of everyone especially the public office holders in Zamfara which is why the gross insensitivity displayed by the deputy governor, Mahdi Aliyu Gusau is offensive, wicked, and imbecilic.
It was reported that barely 24hrs after the said attack which left a river of blood and tears, the deputy governor held a rally in the state capital. The said rally was to show the presence of his party in the state.
I am now of the utmost conviction that his recent show of shame is a piece in the puzzle of insecurity that has plagued Zamfara. This is one of the many vices of the party which made Governor Matawalle ditch the party for the All Progressive Congress.
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A party that is insensitive to its members' plight and those it governs should not be a platform for anyone with selflessness and purposeful leadership to build his lofty agenda and aspirations on.
The first piece of the puzzle which I will like to share was a tweet by Femi Fani Kayode a few weeks ago in which he stated, "May God deliver Zamfara and Nigeria from the evil of a madman that is determined to soak the state and our country in blood. This man is responsible for the instability, bloodshed and violence we have suffered in Nigeria over the decades and he works for the CIA. Many fear him but I do not."
He further affirmed:
"He is pure evil and I am going to expose him. The sword of truth will cut him down and the light of righteousness will expose his dark and evil ways and secrets. What he is doing in Zamfara; the NW and indeed all over Nigeria today is unacceptable. He is a dangerous snake filled with hate, poison & blind & vaulting ambition even at his age."
This is an indication that the sponsors or sponsor of banditry in Zamfara is known and can be revealed.
The second puzzle is the bold action of His Excellency, Governor Bello Muhammed Matawalle when he publicly challenged everyone in the state to follow a demonstration of sincerity by swearing by the Holy Quran that he knows nothing about the banditry ravaging the state or anybody coordinating it.
In his words on March 21, 2021, at the state capital, while receiving an award as the Khadimul Quran conferred on him by the Centre for Quranic Reciter, he said:
“I have sworn with the Holy Quran that if I know, or if I am part of, or I know anybody who is coordinating this (banditry), or with my hand or any of my family, may Allah not give me (speaks in Arabic) in this life."
“I dare all the people from Zamfara state, from our father, Aliyu Gusau to Yarima Bakura and all the cabinet members, right from the inception of the political dispensation of the state, to take this oath as I did.”
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Curiously, none of these aforementioned persons took up the challenge.
The last piece of the puzzle here is the celebration by Mahdi Aliyu. This only affirms the said attack a day before his rally was a successful murderous plot while the rally was a celebration of the successful execution of the evil plot.
With these three puzzles, it is evident one need not look too far for the mischief-makers behind the wickedness which has engulfed Zamfara for over five(5) years. The insensitive action of Mahdi Aliyu Gusua was dancing on the blood of innocent Zamfarans