By Laleye Dipo
It was a bad Easter for some communities in some local government areas in Niger State, as they came under heavy attacks by bandits Sunday night, resulting in the death of three people.
The communities — Maikujeri, Tasha and Shamuyambu — were attacked by the bandits at about 10.30pm, according to information gathered by THISDAY.
The attacks came just a few days after the Nigeria Air Force had bombarded the hideouts of the bandits killing several of them.
In addition, THISDAY gathered that 16 villagers were initially abducted from the three communities but three of the victims were said to have managed to escape.
According to findings, a young girl was reportedly raped by the bandits at Maikujeri town, while a cleric who worships at Baptist Church in the town, Pastor Joseph Dakinwasha, was shot by the bandits.
Dakinwasha was said to have first been admitted at a Maikujeri hospital but has now been transfered to the Kagara General Hospital for proper medical care.
It was learnt that a young boy whose identity is yet to be known was among those killed at Tasha village.
“Many other villagers were wounded and have been admitted at a hospital in Maikujeri, one of the towns raided by the bandits.
“The bandits were about 30 in number they rode on motorcycles and were shooting sporadically sending villagers to run for the safety of their lives.
“Some of us ran into the bush and remained there for almost two hours that the bandits operated,” an eyewitness said.
The eyewitness said the bandits, apart from abducting the 13 villagers, went away with several household items including foodstuffs and also rustled some cattle.
Several phone calls made to the state Police Command’s Public Relations Officer, ASP Wasiu Abiodun, for confirmation were not answered.
The Director General of the State Emergency Management Agency (NSEMA), Alhaji Ibrahim Ahmed Inga, could also not be reached for comments on the issue.
However, a top official of Rafi Local Government council, who craved anonymity, confirmed the story.