By Ishaq Zaki
Bandits on Sunday attacked and killed six members of the Civilian Joint Task Force in Shinkafi Local Government Area of Zamfara, Vice Chairman of the council, Alhaji Sani Galadima said.
Galadima made this known on Monday when he received the Minister of Interior, Lt.- Gen. Abdurrahman Dambazau (rtd), who was on a visit to the state as part of efforts by the Federal Government to find sustainable solutions to the security challenges in the state.
“Six members of Civilian JTF were attacked and killed yesterday, Sunday, by the bandits after receiving their payments from Shinkafi town and were on their way back to their villages,” the vice chairman said.
He added: “Even yesterday, these bandits sent a letter to the district head of Shinkafi town (saying) that they were coming to attack Shinkafi town.
“This ugly situation is very disheartening; everyday we pay millions of naira as ransom to these bandits.
“We really need government’s urgent support to end this problem.
“Our women also suffer a lot (because) the bandits attack communities and abduct ladies from their parents’ homes.
“People no longer sleep with their two eyes closed in the night in Shinkafi LGA.
“We want the government to solve the issue of shortage of manpower including the army and police personnel.
“We only have 19 soldiers in this town.
“We need urgent intervention from the government; we are not satisfied with the efforts and strategies of security agencies.
“We all know the camps where these bandits stay; even the security men are aware of these camps; our major concern is that security personnel are not getting to these bandits.
“We are hoping that with this visit, this problem will come to an end,” he said.
According to Galadima, at least 98 communities in Shinkafi LGA have been deserted due to the activities of bandits in the state.
In his remarks, Dambazau, who was also in Anka Local Government Area, said that he was in the state on assessment visit to stakeholders over the security challenges facing the state.
He said that President Muhammad Buhari was concerned about the security situation in the state.
“This is not my first visit to Zamfara; we started this process to ensure lasting solutions to these problems not only in Zamfara state.
“President Buhari asked me to visit Shinkafi and Anka Emirates in Zamfara to carry out the assessment and discuss these issues.
“The President also expresses his condolence over loss of lives and destruction of properties as a result of this insecurity.
“It is the responsibility of government to ensure lives and properties are secure.
“That is why as government we must do everything to ensure the end of this situation.
“We commenced this process by meeting with leaders of Miyetti Allah; we are going to consult with traditional rulers and governors of the most affected states,” Dambazau stated.
The Emir of Shinkafi, Alhaji Muhammad Makwashe-Isah, expressed appreciation to the minister for the visit and urged the Federal Government to do more in fighting banditry in the state.