President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday said he had directed heads of security agencies in the country to clear the bandits killing innocent citizens in Zamfara State and neighbouring states immediately.
He also ordered that kidnappers operating in all parts of the country should be given a similar treatment.
The President had met with service chiefs and heads of other security agencies behind closed doors specifically to address the Zamfara nightmare and the rising kidnapping incidents in the country.
Thursday’s directives came five days after Operation Puff Adder, a security joint operation targeted at tackling banditry in Zamfara and kidnappings along the Abuja-Kaduna Highway, was launched.
The Chief of Defence Staff, Gen Gabriel Olonisakin, spoke with journalists on what transpired at the meeting.
He stated, “The security meeting we just had with Mr President today (Thursday), was to review the strategy that we are adopting in confronting security issues in Zamfara State especially and other places nationwide.
“This review of strategy is to address all the issues, including kidnapping, banditry and other associated issues confronting the nation and we are coming out with a revised strategy to handle those challenges.”
Olonisakin said Buhari gave specific directives on what to be done in the days ahead.
He explained, “Yes, the marching orders are for us to deal with this issue immediately and ruthlessly and ensure that all those bandits are immediately dealt with and all those issues that are bordering on our security are properly addressed.”
Recall that daring bandits lately had a free reign over Zamfara communities and in neighbouring Katsina State, killing villagers and setting houses ablaze without resistance.
A shaken Zamfara State Governor, Mr Abdulaziz Yari, in his series of Save Our Souls trips to the Presidential Villa, to seek help, had disclosed that the sophisticated weapons used by the bandits were such that the police command and the army in the state could not match them.