The Zamfara State Governor, Dauda Lawal, has been called out by a former Chairman of the Committee on Prosecution of Bandits Related Offenses, Sani Shinkafi, over the accusation levelled against the Federal Government concerning the abduction of some students of the state’s Federal University.
Shinkafi, on Wednesday, described Lawal’s allegation that the federal government met with the bandit involved in the kidnapping as “out of context.”
On Tuesday, Naija News reported that Lawal alleged that his administration had enough facts to show that some officials of the Federal Government met secretly with bandits in the state.
Lawal also claimed that some agencies of the Bola Tinubu-led government had entered a secret dialogue with the bandits after he ruled out the option of negotiating with criminals.
In a statement by his spokesperson, Sulaiman Bala Idris, the governor said some government agencies engaged in negotiations with bandits without the knowledge of the state government and other security agencies.
Lawal, therefore, called for an urgent and comprehensive investigation by the Tinubu government into the secretive negotiations held with bandits in the state by the agencies.
In a swift reaction to the allegation, the Federal Government claimed that there was no truth in the claim that some of its agencies held a secret negotiation with bandits in Zamfara.
Reacting to the allegation, Shinkafi, while featuring on Channels Television’s ‘Sunrise Daily’ programme on Wednesday, said, “The state governor accusing the Federal Government of negotiating with the bandits is out of context. We should not play politics with the lives of people and their property.
“The constitutional responsibility of any serious government is to serve people and provide security of lives and property. The responsibility lies within the ambit and the function of the Federal Government.”
Shinkafi noted that the state governor should be “very appreciative” if the “office of the NSA or the military or ministry of defence follows the approach to tackle the insecurity” in the state.
According to the former bandit prosecution chair, the military is underequipped and understaffed, “terrain where the military is fighting these bandits is very difficult.”
According to him, for the state government to battle insecurity, it should adopt both a kinetic strategy, “where a full military operation is deployed to combat banditry, and a non-kinetic strategy, where respectable members of society can be involved to prevent collateral damage, reduce insecurity, and promote peace in the state.”