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North West won’t allow banditry to escalate, Masari vows

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Katsina State Governor Aminu Masari has declared that the authorities would not allow banditry and other criminalities in the North West to escalate like Boko Haram in the North East.

Masari, while fielding questions from State House correspondents yesterday after he met with President Muhammadu Buhari behind closed doors at Aso Villa, Abuja, said concerted efforts were on by government to end the troubling development in the state.

The governor said the government was determined to contain the situation; hence the military was in Katsina for its annual Super Camp.

He stated: “Over 2,000 of them (soldiers) are gathered in Katsina to send a signal to the bandits that the military is ready, willing and able to deal with the situation.

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“The hope is that the military, the police and other security agencies have been ordered by the president to control the situation by all means, and it is a task that must be done because we cannot allow the situation in the North West to degenerate to a worrisome stage like it is in the North East.”

Residents of the rural communities will attest to the fact that action is on-going and the displaced persons are being well taken care of, he added.

Stressing that though the rainy season was posing a challenge to the fight against the bandits, he noted that government was undeterred to defeat them.

“No situation is impossible, especially to a willing and determined mind. So, I believe that we can conquer these bandits and stop them from becoming something else,” he said.

Masari noted that governments in the affected states were waiting for the military to take total control of the forests and other affected areas before they could roll out their plans for the people affected by banditry.

“First of all, in the aspect of non-kinetic measures, what we are waiting for is for the military to take total control of the land areas, then the state and councils will move in; especially in the area of education, access and water supply, then their means of livelihood, which is mainly agriculture and livestock.

“In Katsina, we have concluded all our designs, but we cannot safely get access to where we can make reservations in terms of earth dams. We have already earmarked 30 areas in which we are going to reconstruct all the earth dams that are broken down and construct some that are new to provide watering points. Again, we are re-introducing grazing points, but as it is today, we cannot access the land.”

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