Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle, has called for the deployment of more soldiers to the state following increasing attacks by bandits in the state.
Matawalle, who made the call when he paid a visit to the Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen Tukur Buratai, at the Army Headquarters, Abuja, also promised to provide the needed logistics, according to a statement by his media aide, Alhaji Yusuf Idris.
He said with the support of the security agencies, a lot of success had been recorded in the war against banditry so far.
According to him, the activities of bandits have been reduced by 90 per cent.
Matawalle described peace, reconciliation and dialogue as the best options for addressing security challenges nationally and internationally, adding that the residents desired to see an end to criminality within and outside the state.
Buratai commended the governor for his contribution towards the efforts to tackle insecurity in the state.
Meanwhile, Matawale has said the government took a decision to negotiate with the bandits so as to end the insecurity in the state and allow the people to go about their normal activities without fear. Matawale said it had been over three weeks since any attack was recorded in the state, adding that the pressure mounted on the criminals by the military through air and ground assaults had helped in halting the attacks on villages.
The governor stated these during a visit to the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, at the Nigerian Air Force Headquarters late on Thursday.
Matawale, according to a release by the air force on Friday, said the negotiations with the bandits were to “immediately end all forms of insecurity in the state so that the people of Zamfara could go about their normal activities without fear.”
He said, “Markets, which were hitherto closed for years, have since been reopened and several captives have regained their freedom. We thank the leadership of the NAF and its personnel for their contributions to the gradual restoration of normalcy to the state.
“I plead that additional support in the areas of community development and provision of health care services be given to help alleviate the shortfall in amenities caused by many years of banditry attacks.”
Abubakar promised that the NAF would continue to support the Zamfara State peace initiative, saying, “The establishment of the 207 Quick Response Wing in Gusau, with its helipads and fuel facilities, has not only added impetus to air operations but also improved the conduct of ground operations with the 250 NAF Special Forces operating in the Gusau and Bungudu Local Government Areas.
“The ultimate aim was to have a minimum of 700 Regiment and Special Forces personnel in Zamfara to complement the efforts of other security agencies.”