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Declare bandits as terrorists- Senate

Edwin Akwueh, Abuja

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Nigerian senate on wednesday urged President Muhammadu Buhari, to “declare the bandits ravaging the country as terrorists and wage total war against them, including bombing all their locations to annihilate and eliminate them.”

 

Senate also asked the President to “declare all the known leadership of the bandits wanted and track them wherever they are for arrest and prosecution.”

 

These formed part of the resolutions reached by the Senate following a motion titled, “Banditry in Sokoto State particularly Sokoto East Senatorial District,” sponsored by Senator Ibrahim Gobir and eight other lawmakers.

 

It also directed the National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA and other relevant federal government agencies to, as a matter of urgency, give all the necessary support to the victims of the menace of banditry in Sokoto and other parts of the country.

 

Leading debate on the motion through Orders 42 and 52 of the Senate Rules, Senator Gobir lamented that “Sokoto East Senatorial District has now become a safe haven for bandits due to the current crackdown taking place in Zamfara State.”

 

“This has gone to portray the seriousness of the problem which requires concerted and urgent action by the declaration of total war on banditry,” he said.

 

While lamenting that most of the bandits have now relocated to Sabon Rimi and Isa Local Government areas due to the sustained military operations at Zamfara axis, he said this has made Sokoto the new haven for the bandits.

 

He, however, advised that the present military onslaught on the bandits should be extended to other states like Sokoto, Katsina, Niger and Kaduna also being ravaged by the criminals instead of being restricted to Zamfara in order to produce effective and the desired results.

 

The Senate President, Dr. Ahmad Lawan, commended the efforts of the Armed Forces in the sustained fight against insecurity in the country.

 

He called for increased funding for the military, tasking relevant committees of the National Assembly to ensure that funds appropriated to the armed forces are judiciously applied for the purpose for which they are budget.

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