Nigerian troops kill 64 bandits, nab gunrunners in Kaduna

Militants and bandits lay siege to Nigeria. 
By Charles Nwoke, Kaduna, Nigeria
May 13, 2021

Nigerian military troops have neutralized 64 bandits and apprehended several gunrunners terrorizing communities in Kaduna State within the space of 3 months.

323 people, however, were killed, and 949 abducted by bandits in various communities across the Northwest State, within the period under review.

This was revealed on Friday by Samuel Aruwan, the State Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, during an emergency security meeting held in the state capital, Kaduna.

The Commissioner, during a press briefing on the security situation in the state for the first quarter of 2021, said the report was on nefarious activities such as banditry, kidnapping, cattle-rustling, attacks, and counter-attacks.

He stated that the report equally covered the aerial missions carried out over-identified bandit hermitages and locations across the State.

Aruwan told newsmen that during the mission, “multiple scores of bandits were engaged and neutralized, with their camps destroyed.

“Deaths linked to banditry, violent attacks, communal clashes, and reprisals in the first quarter total 323 across the State. Of this, 20 were women and 11 were minors.

“Out of the 323 citizens killed, 292 were males. All 236 of the total deaths occurred in Birnin Gwari, Chikun, Igabi, Giwa, and Kajuru LGAs.

“Birnin Gwari recorded the highest figure of 77 deaths, followed by Chikun with 52, Igabi 45, Giwa 42, Kajuru 20 deaths in the first quarter.

“Southern Kaduna Senatorial District had 68 deaths in total, of which 5 were women and two below the age of 18.

“Kajuru had 28 deaths, followed by Zangon Kataf with 14 and Kagarko with 12

“And the Northern senatorial zone is the least affected with 19 people killed and Zaria has the highest casualty of six.

“As earlier highlighted, 64 armed bandits were neutralized during engagements with ground forces.

“Multiple scores of bandits were neutralized via about 150 targeted aerial missions conducted by the Niger Airforce. These missions were initiated based on Credible intelligence of bandit activity and locations of camps, which were targeted and destroyed.

“Several gunrunners have been intercepted and arrested with arms and ammunition recovered in the first quarter. 36 AK47 Rifles, 1959 rounds of live ammunition, and one rocket-propelled grenade were recovered.”

“Vigorous investigations are ongoing towards dismantling more gun-running networks and block arms routes into the State, as these are central to the perpetuation of violence and armed banditry, through the trade in small arms and light weapons,” he added.

The state government reaffirmed its empathy towards individuals and groups who have suffered a terrible loss of properties and loved ones and untold hardship as a result of violence and insecurity in the state. It pledged its readiness to fight criminality and insecurity to a standstill.

The government also promised to intensify efforts towards achieving lasting peace and security across the state.