‘Military operations can’t solve banditry in North’

“The issue of rural banditry in the northwest, there is no military solution to it. It is fundamentally a rural problem. It has to be addressed from the grassroots, the rural areas”.

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By Maryam Quadri

A University Don, Usman Danfodiyo University (UDUS), Sokoto, Dr Murtala Rufa’i, says ongoing military operation in the Northwest zone of the country is not the solution to end banditry and other security challenges ravaging the country.

This is as just a renowned intelligence and security expert, Kabiru Adamu revealed that Northern Nigeria recorded at least 84% of fatalities in December 2021, adding that it was high time for the federal government to embrace the use of metrics with a view to solving the challenges.

“The problem of banditry is not just about the military operations. One of the major challenges affecting the issue of banditry in rural Zamfara today is the epidemic affecting the cattle.”

Rufa’i, who spoke as one of the panelists at the 19th Daily Trust Dialogue held in Abuja on Thursday, stressed that the traditional institutions should be allowed to play their roles if Nigerian leaders are ready to genuinely end banditry in the country.

According to him, banditry is a rural problem and should be treated as such, explaining that terrorists, bandits, kidnappers and other criminals are brought up in the rural arreas.

He said, “the issue of rural banditry in the northwest, there is no military solution to it. It is fundamentally a rural problem. It has to be addressed from the grassroots, the rural areas”.

These people, we actually now classified as terrorists, are people that are born and brought up in the rural areas and fortunately or unfortunately none of them has moved. They are where they were born and brought up.

“The problem of banditry is not just about the military operations. One of the major challenges affecting the issue of banditry in rural Zamfara today is the epidemic affecting the cattle.”

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