Persons in Katsina
Francis Sardauna in Katsina
Katsina State Governor, Alhaji Aminu Bello Masari, yesterday said repentant bandits have released five persons including women detained in their custody as part of the ongoing dialogue between the state government and the miscreants to restore peace in the state.
The governor, therefore, urged residents of the state to allow the repentant bandits to carry out their commercial activities in markets across the state.
Masari, who was speaking in Baranda Village in Batsari Local Government Area of the state, during a reconciliation meeting with bandits, said the victims were freed on Sunday and had since been reunited with their families.
However, Dangote and Dankarami, strongholds of the bandits in Batsari Local Government Area were absence in the reconciliation meeting because “they are at loggerheads with each other.”
The duo, who sent their representatives at the meeting, were said to have numerous bandits’ camps in Katsina and Zamfara states with many kidnapped persons in their custody.
Masari said: “Five people including three women that were kidnapped by the bandits have been released by them. Three women left my house this morning (Monday) to their houses. And the bandits also promised to free the remaining people in their custody.”
He, however, directed security agencies in the state to protect the lives and properties of the citizenry residing in rural settlements and urged them to avoid extortion.
In his remarks, Katsina State Commissioner of Police, Sanusi Buba, urged bandits terrorising innocent citizens in the state to surrender their weapons and work with security agencies to maintain peace or face the wrath of the law. Earlier, the Transition Committee Chairman of Batsari Local Government Area, Mr. Mannir Mu’azu, said the council would inaugurate security committee to ensure peaceful co-existence in the area.
Some of the bandits, Abdullahi Ibrahim and Fulani Shafe, who spoke during the meeting, commended Masari for initiating the dialogue and vowed to surrender their arms for the sustainability of peace in the state.
Meanwhile, as of press time, Masari and other top government officials including security chief in the state were heading to Shinfida Village of Jibia Local Government Area of the state for another interface with the bandits.