Apparently worried by the spate of insecurity, including banditry, kidnapping, insurgency and herders-farmers’ crisis, among others in their areas, northern governors yesterday stormed the Presidential Villa, Abuja, seeking President Muhammadu Buhari’s urgent intervention to halt the menace.
The governors were led to the Villa by the out-going Northern Governors’ Forum (NGF) Chairman, Kashim Shettima of Borno State. While noting that normalcy had virtually returned to the North-East, the governors, however, warned that armed banditry was posing a dangerous threat and needed to be tackled with equal swiftness.
Masari, who spoke while addressing newsmen after the meeting yesterday, said they were in the Presidential Villa to see the President based on their resolution at a meeting held in Kaduna 10 days ago. “The issue that brought us to the President is about the rising insecurity in the North-West, North-Central and North-East. So, this concern made us to come and brief the President so that urgent action would be taken to curb this deadly menace of banditry, which is gradually graduating into insurgency.
Meanwhile, Buhari said that tackling insecurity was on the front-burner of his administration. “The security of the country is in my mind 24 hours of the day. I get daily and weekly situation reports. I have listened to your brief. I will look into your recommendations. I am acutely aware of the situation, but I have learnt more today,” he said.
In a statement after the meeting, Buhari said: “If you follow the efforts we are making within the system, you will see that we have curbed much of the corruption that is there.”In another development, Commander of Operation Whirl Stroke (OPWS), Maj.-Gen. Adeyemi Yekini, has said that over 140 bandits have been neutralised and 172 others arrested during encounter with OPWS troops in Benue, Nasarawa and Taraba states in the past one year. Yekini stated this while briefing journalists yesterday at the operation’s headquarters to mark one-year anniversary of the OPWS in Makurdi.
said that the troops recorded more operations in Benue but recovered more arms in Nasarawa State.According to the commander, those arrested included armed herdsmen and criminals linked to Gana.