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Community disagree with Army over killing of bandits, says we are yet to see impact of Military

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The Nigerian Army and some community leaders in Dansandau Emirate of Maru LGA, Zamfara State, have differed over the claim that it (Army) had recorded a huge success in the fight against terrorism and kidnapping in the North-West.

While the Army claimed that it neutralised 220 bandits, rescued 642 kidnapped victims, foiled 167 banditry and 81 kidnapped attempts from June to December last year, the community leaders insisted that they had yet to see the impact of the military’s success against terror and kidnapping in the geo-political zone.

The Acting Director Defence, Media Operations, Brigadier General Benard Onyeuko, while briefing newsmen in Faskari Super Camp Four on Wednesday, added that apart from the killing of 220 bandits, 197 bandits’ camps were also destroyed during the period under review.

Onyeuko who was represented by the Nigerian Army Operations Media Coordinator, Colonel Aminu Ilyasu, stated that 73 AK-47 rifles, 194 Dane guns and 53,200 ammunition were recovered.

Onyeuko added that 335 suspected bandits, 326 illegal miners, 147 bandits’ informants and collaborators, 14 bandits’ arms suppliers, 24 rustled cattle marketers and 46 bandits’ logistics suppliers were arrested.

But speaking with The reflector in a telephone interview, one of the community leaders in the area, Alhaji Nuhu Dansadau, said bandits were still terrorising the innocent people of the area.”

Nuhu stated that the bandits were still going round the area, carrying AK-47 rifles even in the day time, adding that, “the military operation did not make any meaningful impact, particularly in Kuyanbana forest.”

He stressed that some villages like Jesa, Kalhu, Tasa, Gazamba, Yartsaba, Magamar-Danbata, Anguwar Doka, Kwangerawa and Maidoraiyi had been deserted by the people due to persistent attacks from the bandits.

“As I am talking to you now, there are over 700 people who are waiting for vehicles to convey them to other places,” Nuhu added.

Another community leader, Alhaji Ibrahim Tofa, said bandits were always going round and hunting for people to kidnap, lamenting that, “despite the deployment of the military, the bandits are still attacking us.”

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