By John Shiklam in Kaduna
The Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) has appealed to the federal government to take urgent steps to combat the increasing wave of kidnapping and armed banditry in Kaduna, Zamfara, Katsina and Sokoto states.
In a statement on Thursday in Kaduna, the forum said it was worried and disturbed with reports of spate of kidnappings of innocent people on the highways and frequent attacks on villages by armed bandits which has led to the death of hundreds of innocent people.
The statement which was signed by Muhammad Ibrahim, spokesman of the forum, said the “frequent kidnappings, especially along Kaduna-Abuja express highway and many villages in Zamfara, Sokoto, Katsina and Kaduna states as well as many parts of the country is cruel, barbaric and inhuman.”
” ACF, therefore, condemns these unwarranted and unbridled kidnappings and killings of people by some unknown gunmen.
”This is a serious challenge to the place of government, our military and other security agencies as the spate of attacks is getting vicious and unacceptable.
”The establishment of Military Joint Task Force and other security operational command bases in Zamfara, Sokoto and other flash point states to combat the bandits activities in the region need to redouble their efforts in order to put an end to this daily loss of innocent lives and destruction of property” the statement said.
The forum also called on the security agencies to employ new strategies and intelligence gathering needed to effectively smoke-out the kidnappers and bandits from their enclaves and hideouts.
The statement urged the police to deploy more personnel to the affected states and highways to “not only repel attacks but go after the perpetrators and bring them to book.”
”ACF appeals to the federal government to seriously reexamine its security apparatus and take adequate measures that will increase the number of police personnel, train them and provide equipment and other logistic support to effectively tackle this menace.
”ACF equally urges the communities to cooperate with the security agencies by way of intelligence gathering and sharing.
”ACF extends its condolences to the families of the innocent souls killed in the dastardly acts of the kidnappers and bandits, the people and governments of the affected states” the forum said.