"Bandits Abduct Senior Lecturer in Zamfara, Kill Nine in Katsina Attack"

“Bandits Abduct Senior Lecturer in Zamfara, Kill Nine in Katsina Attack”

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In the early hours of Wednesday, bandits targeted a senior lecturer from the Department of Islamic Studies at the Federal University Gusau, Zamfara State, Mallam Bello Janbako, kidnapping him from his residence in Damba, Gusau. Simultaneously, in Katsina State on Thursday morning, a separate attack by bandits resulted in the death of nine individuals and the destruction of five houses in Kukar Babangida village, Jibia Local Government Area.

The series of attacks adds to the prevailing insecurity challenges faced by Nigeria, encompassing terrorism, banditry, and assaults by criminal herdsmen, particularly in the northern regions. These incidents occurred on the heels of the Christmas Eve attacks in 15 Plateau State communities, where over 150 people were killed, and approximately 221 houses were razed, displacing more than 10,000 residents.

In Zamfara, Mallam Bello Janbako’s abduction took place around 1:30 am, with bandits reportedly overpowering security agents during the incident. The area, part of Gusau town, the state capital, is increasingly unsafe, prompting private schools to suspend regular activities for safety reasons.

This incident follows the kidnapping of 24 students from the Federal University Gusau by bandits in September, and currently, 11 students remain in captivity. The latest victim’s home was invaded around 2 o’clock in the morning, with gunshots fired to intimidate residents. Despite security personnel’s intervention, the bandits prevailed, escaping with Mallam Bello Janbako into the forest.

In Katsina, the attack on Kukar Babangida village led to the loss of lives and property. Bandits armed with AK-47 rifles shot and killed nine people, while also setting five vehicles ablaze. The state police command initiated efforts to apprehend the perpetrators, deploying operatives to restore normalcy in the affected area.

The Commissioner for Internal Security, Nasiru Muazu, reiterated the state’s commitment to safeguarding lives and property, expressing determination to ensure the safety of the people.

The surge in such incidents prompted calls for a collaborative and coordinated effort among North-West states to address banditry collectively. Former Secretary to the Katsina State Government, Alhaji Inuwa Mustapha, emphasized the need for joint efforts and urged regional governors to exert pressure on the Federal Government for assistance in tackling banditry and related crimes. Mustapha advocated for a unified approach involving simultaneous operations with air and ground troops, supported by local guides and hunters familiar with the terrain, to effectively combat bandit activities.

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