Two troops were murdered and 12 others were injured in a recent attack by suspected bandits in Kagara, the council capital of the state’s Rafi Local Government Area, according to Niger State Governor Abubakar Bello.
In a statement, the governor’s spokesperson, Mary Noel-Berje, stated the bandits had suffered serious casualties as well, but she did not elaborate.
According to the governor, the gunmen trashed the emir of the town’s palace in an attempt to kidnap the king, who was apparently absent at the time of the incident.
When the governor visited soldiers suffering treatment at the Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida (IBB) Specialist Hospital in Minna, he spoke about the attack.
Some of the injured soldiers were taken to Kaduna for medical treatment, according to Mr Bello.
Because of their growing numbers and the manner they plot and carry out their attacks, the governor believes the bandits have formed an alliance with terrorists.
He said the situation requires a reassessment, and that in addition to the kinetic measures being made, a support mechanism for individuals who have lost their livelihood due to banditry and cattle rustling will be developed.
The governor urged individuals to be vigilant about security and to report any suspicious activity they saw.
The statement also expressed concerns about the presence of bandits in several rural areas.
“We’ll shortly classify those societies as having the same elements as bandits. If you are harboring any bandits and you are aware that you are one, even if you do not carry a gun, you are endangering our security agents’ lives.
“We’ve lost quite a few of them (security people) since it began, and we have no plans to lose any more.” What we’re asking for is a safe environment, and everyone should support the security agents’ continued operations,” the governor stated.
The governor also paid visits to others, including a victim of a gas explosion from Kagara who has been admitted to the hospital’s surgical unit for nearly two months.
Meanwhile, the governor expressed his displeasure with the status of the hospital, which he claimed cost a fortune to remodel a few years ago.
He stated that the matter would be looked into because he believes something was fundamentally wrong and that someone was failing to do their job.“I am quite furious because I recall spending a lot of money to rebuild the entire hospital when we first arrived, and for this institution to be like this in less than four years, something is fundamentally wrong. So, I’m not happy and I’m enraged, really enraged.
Bandits kill two troops and wound 12 others, says Gov Bello