National News

Zamfara Gov’t Wants Notorious Bandit Leader To Surrender Publicly

Written by Zainab Sabitu

The Zamfara State Committee on Prosecutions of Bandits Related Offences says until Bello Turji, the Notorious Bandit Kingpin publicly surrenders his arms and announces his repentance, it will not consider his repentance true.

Chairman of the committee, Abdullahi Shinkafi, said this at a press briefing in Gusau, the Zamfara State capital on…

Shinkafi, who is also from Shinkafi Local Government where Turji mostly operates, said for over six months, there was no record of attack or mass abduction of persons in the area and other communities in Zurmi Local Government and neighbouring Isa and Sabon-Birnin areas of Sokoto State.

He, however, said the lack of attack does not mean the bandit who unleashed terror and killings in the region has changed for the better.

“As far as I am concern, I know that he has embraced peace but I cannot say that he has repented because if he has repented, he has to surrender all his arms and ammunitions, come to the government and submit his arms like what other repentant bandits did,” Shinkafi said.

He was responding to an earlier pronouncement by the Zamfara State Deputy Governor, Senator Hassan Nasiha, that the bandit leader had embraced a peace deal.

He promised not to give in to compromise and be part of peace talks with any bandit, describing the action being taken by many of them as deception.

“Anything to do with dialogue with bandits, count me out because most of them are not trustworthy, they are not sincere, they are not honest, whatever you agreed with them, they will still go back to their bad business, most of them.”

Shinkafi bemoaned what he described as the prolonged investigations and delayed prosecution of arrested bandits and their collaborators.

“The major problem we are having is from the security agencies and the judges and lawyers who are protecting these criminals, when you arrested a bandit with 11 AK-47 rifles, which evidence are you waiting for, he needs to be sent to his creator. When an armed bandit was caught in an act, killing people and you are waiting for investigation, what are you investigating for? Send him to his creator.”

The Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle recently signed a law that approves death penalty for anyone convicted for banditry, kidnapping, cattlerustling, cultism, or serving as a bandits’ informant in the state.

Bello Turji is a notorious terrorist who is known to have been responsible for numerous massacres, abductions and attacks against civilians and security forces in Zamfara and parts of Sokoto State.

News of his repentance is coming barely two months after another Kidnap Kingpin Ado Alero, known for terrorising communities in Tsafe Local Government Area of Zamfara and parts of Katsina State was turbaned as the Sarkin Fulani of Yandoto Daji Emirate.

The turbaning of Ado Alero sparked outrage. In the aftermath, the state government denied having anything to do with the turning and suspended the Emir of Sabon Birnin Yandoto, Aliyu Garba Marafa, who turbaned him.

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Zainab Sabitu

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