….Over 5,000 people already migrated to Niger Republic
….As Senate urges Buhari for immediate rescue operation in the area
ABUJA – The Senate was stunned Tuesday by Senator Ibrahim Gobir ( APC Sokoto East), with damning report that people of his constituency are now at the mercy of Nigerien Soldiers for protection against armed bandits , as Nigerian Army has completely abandoned them .
This is as the Senate accordingly urged President Muhamnadu Buhari to direct the military for immediate expansion of their operations against banditry from Katsina and Zamfara to Sokoto and Niger States .
Senator Gobir who made the lamentation while seconding and contributing to a motion on urgent military action against banditry in Niger State , said the Sokoto incidences are worse than any other parts of the country .
According to him, within the last three months , not less than 300 people in Sokoto East Senatorial District, have either been killed or kidnapped by the rampaging armed bandits on daily basis .
” The situation in Sokoto East as far as armed banditry is concerned, is pathetic and tragic because it is only Nigerien Army that had been coming to their rescue while the Nigerian Army looks the other way round .
” Infact , based on very reliable and verifiable information from the area, many at times , that the people of the affected areas called on Nigerian Army for help and protection against the bandits , no response .
” But graciously , the Nigerien Army has been assisting in wading off the bandits, the very reason while not less than 5,000 people in the affected areas have migrated to Niger Republic for safety”, he said .
He lamented further that aside the 300 people who had fallen victim of banditry attacks in the area through kidnapping or outright killing, hundreds of cows and other animals have been rusted by the bandits the worth of which is about N2.5billion .
” Fallout of this is grinding poverty ravaging the affected people in form of serious hunger since their cows and other animals are on daily basis being stolen and even made from some of the cows they hurriedly sold .
” The situation is so bad that we only get help from Niger Republic and not from Nigeria at all, be it from the Military or the Police .
” The affected people cannot be perpectually be at the mercy of Nigerien Soldiers and still expected to proudly see themselves as Nigerians .
” Very urgent drastic action is required from President Buhari through the military in form of expansion of anti- banditry operation currently being carried out in Zamfara and Katsina State to Sokoto State “, he said .
Senator Sabi Abdullahi had in the motion anchored on orders 42 and 52 of the Senate Standing rules , lamented of daily occurrence of armed banditry in Niger State requiring urgent intervention from President Muhamnadu Buhari.
Though the Senate in its resolutions, commended President Buhari for the anti – banditry operations going on in Katsina and Zamfara States , but urged him , for urgent expansion of the exercise in Sokoto and Niger States , in stemming the tide of the ugly situations there .
In his remarks , the President of the Senate , Senator Ahmad Lawan said the security challenges are enormous but summountable .
” Nigeria is definitely up to the task and Mr President will deploy military to the areas for restoration of sanity as gradually being witnessed in Zamfara and Katsina States “, he said .