The Governor of Zamfara State, Bello Matawalle, has shared about fifteen brand new Hilux vehicles to leaders of different repentant bandits in the state.
According to SaharaReporters, the state Governor also shared millions of naira to the repentant bandits as compensation.
Governor Matawalle-led government in 2019 entered a peace agreement with bandits in the state, but despite the peace agreement, gunmen are still attacking communities in the state.
A top military officer who spoke with the news platform noted that some bandits now carry out attacks with some of the vehicles given to them by the Zamfara Governor.
The officer said, “Those bandits have different group, so if they say they repent, the governor will give them a Hilux vehicle but unfortunately they are now using the vehicles to carry out attacks.”
“On Sunday, they attacked Jankara but were resisted by the local vigilantes, so they fled and left one of those Hilux vehicles and the motorcycles they came with behind.”
“It’s so sad, he called it a peace and reconciliation programme, but all you need to be rich now in Zamfara is to take up arms against the people.”
A committee that was put in place to investigate insecurity in the region, headed by Mohammed Abubakar, disclosed that Zamfara State between June 2011 and May 2019, has seen 4,983 women left without a husband; 25,050 children orphaned, and more than 190,000 people were displaced as a result of armed banditry.
Recall that Katsina State Governor, Aminu Masari, last year disclosed that his government pulled out of the peace deal it had with bandits in the state.
According to Masari, despite the peace agreement between the state government and the bandits, they continued to carry out attacks with their accomplices from Zamfara, Kaduna and Niger Republic, leading to “indiscriminate killings” and kidnappings in the state.
He said, “The armed bandits have betrayed our trust in them, following a peace agreement earlier negotiated with them, in our quest to find a lasting peace in the state.”
“We chose dialogue for peaceful coexistence in the state and we have done our best; yet, the attacks continue.”
“As a result of the peace agreement, the government banned vigilance groups and identified cattle routes and facilitated free movements of bandits to convey their livestock to the markets.”