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Bandits Ask Sokoto Communities To Pay Levies, Issue Ultimatum For Payment

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Many Kidnapped, Six Killed As Bandits Attack Zamfara Village

Residents living in some communities in Sokoto State have been instructed by bandit terrorists to pay levies before next Friday or suffer attacks.

According to a resident of the area, the levies vary from one community to another, adding that some heads of households were also ordered to pay.

He disclosed that the bandits determined the amount each community should pay by the number of people living in the area, adding some communities were asked to pay N400,000, while some were told to pay N700,000.

The resident told Daily Trust that villages such as Attalawa, Danmaliki, Adamawa, Dukkuma, Sardauna and Dangari were asked to pay N400,000 each.

He stated that residents of Kwatsal village billed N4million were said to have already paid N2million out of the money to the bandits.

The resident revealed that some of the communities had settled the bandits while others were working hard to raise the money, saying that young men that are not married were asked to pay N1,000 each.

According to him, the bandits have barred the residents from going to their farms pending payment of the levies.

A member representing Sabon Birni North Constituency, Aminu Almustapha Gobir, said there had been no attack in Sabon Birni in recent times because the locals were complying with the directive of the bandits. 

 The people prefer to pay and live in peace in their communities than to rely on security agencies or go on exile,” he said. 

A former Chairman of Sabon Birni Local Government Area, Idris Muhammad, however, faulted the payment of levies to bandits, saying doing so would not guarantee people’s safety. 

We have different groups of bandits in the area, if you pay a levy to this group how sure are you the other group will not attack you?

“The same scenario unfolded in Gatawa and Tarah, which were attacked and several of their people abducted by different groups of bandits. Their relatives had to pay ransom to those different groups before their release. 

“This is what will continue to happen, if one group places a levy on you and you pay, another group will come to either attack you or demand for levy again and you must pay them or face the consequences,” he said. 

Ige Olugbenga is a fine-grained journalist. He loves the smell of a good lead and has a penchant for finding out something nobody else knows.