There are at least 10,000 armed bandits and cattle rustlers operating in eight major camps in Zamfara State, Governor Abdulaziz Yari said.
The governor disclosed this in Gusau yesterday at a two-day federal and state security administrators’ meeting.
Yari, represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Abdullahi Muhammad Shinkafi, said there were also 32 smaller camps where the armed criminals were operating in the state.
He said most of the 715 healthcare facilities and 570 primary schools built by his administration had not been accessible to the benefiting communities due to the activities of armed bandits.
He said: “Armed banditry, cattle rustling and kidnapping have been plaguing our communities for the past 10 years. The armed men now issue notice ahead of attacks unlike before when they would strike strategically. About 4000 were killed, 100,000 people had been displaced, 8,000 women widowed and 16,000 children orphaned in the wake of the deadly assaults on the rural communities of the state, the effect of which is still being felt everywhere in the state.”
Yari thanked the Federal Government for banning mining in the state which he said was aiding the activities of criminals.
“The armed criminals are directionless, they don’t care to die or about the consequences of their bad actions. Over 4000 military personnel have now been posted to the state as against the few that were obtainable in the past,” he added.