Zamfara Government on Sunday advised individuals to obtain guns and defend themselves in the height of the resurgence of insecurity in the state.
The state government, in a statement by the Commissioner for Information, Alhaji Ibrahim Dosara, said:” the government has henceforth, directed individuals to prepare and obtain guns to defend themselves against the bandits.
“Government has directed the state Commissioner of police to issue licence to all those who qualify and are wishing to obtain such guns to defend themselves.
“Government is ready to facilitate for people, especially our farmers, to secure basic weapons for defending themselves.
“Government has already concluded arrangements to distribute 500 forms to each of the 19 Emirates in the state for those willing to obtain guns to defend themselves,” Dosara said.
He explained that the government directive followed the increase in the activities of bandits in various parts of the state.
The commissioner, however, noted the state government’s commitment to ensure adequate security and protection of lives and property of citizens, particularly during the rainy season.
Dosara said government had resolved to deal with the recent escalating attacks, kidnapping and the criminal levies being enforced on innocent communities.
“This act of terrorism has been a source of worry and concern to the people and government of the state.
“Therefore, in order to deal decisively with the situation, government has no option than to take these measures,” Dosara said.
According to him, residents must however, apply from the Commissioner of Police, licence to own guns and such other basic weapons to be used in defending themselves.
“A secretariat or centre will be established for the collection of intelligence on the activities of informants.
” Residents are strictly warned and advised to make sure that any information or intelligence about an informant must be true and nothing but the truth.
“All information on such informants must carry correct data on the suspects, including their pictures, correct names, address, occupation and witness to testify on the facts of the information given.
” Government will take punitive measures against any one found as informant.
” Any person who give wrong information against anybody, will be served the same punishment with an informant and will be treated as such,” the commissioner aaid.
He said government had requested the State House of Assembly to pass, as matter of urgency, the informants bill before it, to enable government to take the drastic measures on informants as contained in the bill.
He said government had ordered for the recruitment of 200 additional Community Protection Guards in each of the 19 emirates of the state, making it 500 per emirate.
The action, he noted, would increase their manpower and strengthen their force and capacity to deal with the bandits.
The state government had also constituted an 11-man special committee to receive intelligence on the activities of informants.
This committee is chaired by Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Alhaji Kabiru Balarabe while Bello Bakyasuwa Soja will serve as secretary to the committee.
He also announced an additional paramilitary unit to support control and command, to properly and effectively reinforce the operations of Community Protection Guards (CPG).
This newly established unit has eight members with retired Commissioner of Police Mamman Anka as Commandant – General
Dosara said the state government had reconstituted an 11-member state committee on prosecution of banditry related offences with Dr Sani Abdullahi Wanban Shinkafi as Chairman.
Meanwhile, Gov. Bello Matawalle has ordered the immediate closure of all markets, including livestock markets in Mada, Wonaka, and Ruwan Bore Districts of Gusau Local Government and Yandoto Emirate in Tsafe Local Government.
“The governor has equally banned riding of motorbikes and selling of petroleum products in Mada, Wonaka and Ruwan Bore districts, as well as Yandoto emirate.
“Henceforth, all filling stations in the affected areas are hereby closed with immediate effect.
“Anyone found riding motorbike within the areas is considered as bandit and security agencies are thereby directed to shoot such persons at sight.
“Security agencies are by this announcement directed to ensure strict compliance.
“Anyone found violating this order should be dealt with according to the rule of law.
“Government would not condone any act where innocent people are being killed.
“Matawallle thanked all those who honoured and respected the peace dialogue in whatever form.
” In the same vein, those who refused to honour and respect the peace dialogue are hereby warned to allow peace within our communities.
Government hereby directs the Military, the Nigeria Police, the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, and other security agencies to mobilise their operatives and take the fight to the enclaves of the criminals with immediate effect.