In the face of recent abductions mostly in Jibia, Batsari and Dutsinma Local Government Areas of Katsina state, the Governor of the state, Aminu Masari insists that the peace accord signed between it and leaders of repentant bandits has not collapsed.
The governor disclosed this in Katsina while briefing the media the on security situation in the state.
According to the police, the latest kidnapping was on Monday when occupants of two J5 buses were abducted along Ruma road in Batsari local government area.
However, security agencies succeeded in rescuing the victims, except seven taken away by the kidnappers.
The governor agreed that there were still some challenges, but that the “peace accord is still on course”.
“Whoever wants to talk, should look at the state and the country by talking responsibly.
“When we made the peace accord, not all the bandits embraced it and attended the meeting, particularly those from Batsari and Jibia areas.
“Their gang leaders like the one called Dangote and Dankarami refused to join, but those living in Sabuwa, Dandume and Safana embraced the peace accord and are now assisting the government in fighting the unrepentant ones.
“About 80 per cent of the bandits in the bush joined the peace accord, the remaining 10-15 per cent who refused to join, are the ones now creating these problems.
“In Jibia’s case, we understand that some rice smugglers connived with bandits and invited them to go and clear the road for them.
“Now the bandits have returned to people in the town,” he said.
Masari further said his administration met the problem of cattle rustling but after addressing it, banditry also came up, and after the peace accord, now it was kidnapping, which was all over the country.
He therefore advised people to stop paying ransom to kidnappers, saying as long as people continue to pay ransom; it will take longer time to stop it.
The governor said the next step for the peace accord would be disarmament of the repentant bandits.
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