Kano: Tackling cattle rustling, kidnapping with new law
The Kano State Police Command has set up an Eminent Persons Forum to help resolve the recurring problem of cattle rustling in the state. The forum comprising notable leaders in the state is expected to come up with strategies of ensuring that criminal activities are curbed to allow for peaceful coexistence of residents.
The state has not been immune from criminal activities, including cattle rustling, armed robbery and kidnapping, which have been reported in the North West geo-political zone of the country.
While, accusing finger has been pointed in the direction of the Fulanis as the perpetrators of the cattle rustling, the Fulfude Development Association of Nigeria (FULDAN), led by Sunusi Ahmad Baffa Dawakin Tofa, blamed strangers from Zamfara State as the brain behind the crime.
He explained that these strangers who migrated from Zamfara settled in Kano forests and in collaboration with their local contacts, perpetrated all forms of crimes in the state.
Kano State Commissioner of Police, Rabi’u Yusuf, at a stakeholders meeting recently, disclosed that the Eminent Persons Forum was founded with the approval of the Inspector General of Police.
The trouble spots are in Rano, Tudun Wada, Doguwa, Sumaila among others.
On efforts of his association in helping to curb the activities of cattle rustlers, Dawakin Tofa said FULDAN came up with a strategy of using our Ardos and Jauros (community leaders) to help in clamping down on the criminals. He disclosed that they were getting fruitful results through collaboration with the community leaders and the security agencies. “Security agents are doing their best in Kano. And there is no doubt about this. It is there for all to see,” he said.
He noted, “It was devastating that in the last three months not less than 10 people were kidnapped in Kano, while the kidnappers requested for one million naira per head before they could release their victims. What we think was responsible for the then incessant cattle rustling was the fact that some criminal strangers were coming to Kano forests without them being identified by the local community. Let people be more vigilant.”
However, the setting up of the eminent persons forum by the police has been lauded by various groups in the state. Chairman of the forum, Ambassador Mutari Gashash, at a recent meeting of members, called on members of the public “to fight all forms of criminal activities in the state in particular and the country in general.”
At the meeting, a retired Assistance Inspector General of Police, Bashir Albasu, urges communities in the state to help in fishing out bad eggs amongst them.
Meanwhile, Kano state governor, Abdullahi Umar Ganduje has established an Amnesty Committee for Rustlers, during which he called on cattle rustlers to renounce their criminal activities and embrace the government amnesty programme. At the occasion, over 500 cattle were handed over to the state government through the Committee of Recovered Cattles from Rustlers. Also recovered from 71 suspected rustlers paraded by the police at the occasion, were 21 weapons of different caliber, 519 cows, 11 camels, 134 sheep and a large quantity of drugs valued at N61m.
Chairman of the Committee of Recovered Cattles and Commissioner for Local Governments, Murtala Sule Garo. Maintained, “This administration is doing everything possible to see that repentant rustlers are integrated into the larger society. We put in place a good mechanism that helps in the proper and effective return of cattle to the rightful owners. We are happy that many have come forward to claim their cattle and we have put in place an effective and efficient mechanism to see that any claim to any cattle is substantiated beyond any reasonable doubt before the handing over.
“Government is doing its best to continue taking care of the recovered cattle by feeding and medication up to the time when handing over period comes. “
To curb the incidence of kidnapping, the state governor Ganduje has very recently signed State’s Kidnapping, Abduction and Forced Labour Bill into law. The Law provides for death sentence for kidnappers who abduct and kill their victims, while kidnappers who abduct, but did not kill their victims, if apprehended and found culpable, would be jailed for life.
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