Residents of rural communities in the Maru and Bungudu areas of Zamfara State said despite the presence of security agents, attacks on their communities are on the increase.
PREMIUM TIMES spoke to about ten residents, including the federal lawmaker representing Maru/Bungudu, Abdulmalik Zubairu, over the growing attacks.
Mr Zubairu said more than 50 people were killed in his constituency in the past few weeks and many more injured.
The lawmaker said the increasing attack in the areas was a major source of worry to residents, many farmers who are now unable to plant their crops due to the threat.
‘For instance, recently, there is a community called Tungar masu in Bungudu local government nine people were killed. There is another village Kwaren Tsauni, where about ten people were killed. And you asked me yourself, the day before yesterday (Wednesday), according to my records, nine people were killed in Dangulbi while seven people with a serious degree of injuries were hospitalised. On Wednesday still, a lawyer was killed in his house in Kwatarwkashi town. These things keep happening on a daily basis,’ he said.
Mr Zubairu named other communities like Bingi and Kurar Mota that he said are under siege.
The lawmaker said he would play his part as a member of the House of Representatives by reporting to the National Assembly and taking other actions to mitigate the attacks.
“I am a lawmaker. I am not part of the executive or a security agent. I am calling on the security agencies to put more effort because the situation is getting out of hand. These bandits are crossing over from other countries because we don’t share borders with any country.
“They (bandits) are not far from the towns. We have security agents all over the place. This is not a case of not having security. Had it been there are no security agents on the roads, then we would be discussing the importance of bringing in more security men,” Mr Zubairu said.
A resident of Dangulbi, Bello Mansur, said the community had been thrown into confusion after the Wednesday attack.
‘These people came into the community and began shooting sporadically. Nobody can tell you what offence we’ve committed to deserve such fate. It is very animalistic. They will just come and start shooting, kill people and go away,’ he said.
He said the terrorists attacked his community around 10 p.m. on Wednesday. He said they arrived on several motorcycles and started shooting residents indiscriminately.
“It was only in the morning (Thursday) that we discovered ten dead bodies and buried them. Several wounded people are taken to the hospital,” he said.
A resident of Dansadau in Maru said the community and the neighbouring villages produce crops in large quantities every year, but incessant attacks have led to a decline in the yields from their farms.
“We’ve not been going out of Dansadau for about three days now. It’s like we’re not even existing any more. Whenever we want to go to Gusau or Maru, the soldiers must escort us. We go out and line our vehicles and wait for the soldiers to come. No one ventures out of the area without the soldiers. We’re grateful that the soldiers are here to protect us in the town, but for how long?” he said.
On Wednesday, a popular lawyer in Zamfara State, Ahmad Abubakar, was killed by terrorists when they attacked his residence in Kwatarkwashi in the Bungudu area.
The chairman of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) in the State, Junaidu Abubakar, confirmed the killing to Channels TV.
“Let me confirm to you that it is true, he was attacked in his house, the attackers did not take anything from his home, he was only picked, and there were several machete injuries in his body.
“We just finished his burial now according to Islamic rite, the Bar is going to hold a meeting because this is not the first time this is happening,” he stated.
Mr Abubakar was the NBA welfare secretary in the state.
When contacted, the police spokesperson in the state, Yazeed Abubakar, said the command was not relenting in its fight against banditry.
He said the commissioner of police had been visiting vulnerable areas in the state to interface with community leaders and police formations.
On the attack at Dangulbi, Mr Abubakar promised to contact the area Divisional Police Officer before commenting. He was yet to respond at the time of filing this story.
Zamfara, like other states in the North-west and some parts of the North-central, has been witnessing a series of terrorist attacks for over a decade.
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