Governor Aminu Masari on Tuesday said seven states in the North West and North Central have agreed to recruit 3,000 special vigilantes to assist in combating insecurity, most especially banditry and kidnapping.
The Katsina State Governor revealed this in an interview following a consultative meeting with the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed and traditional rulers, in Katsina.
The seven states include Zamfara, Sokoto, Kebbi, Kaduna, Niger, Katsina and Nasarawa. According to the Katsina Governor, all seven state Governors had met and agreed to recruit the personnel who will be trained by the Nigeria Police Force to assist security agencies in addressing the security peculiarities in their states.
Masari said that the issue of banditry in the North West and parts of North Central has transformed to insurgency; this necessitated the development of different mechanisms to fight the menace. He further stated that there are over 150 groups of bandits in the forests that owe allegiance to their different leaders. He described them as people who “do not have ideology, religion or sense of direction, but are just like wild animals”.
Meanwhile, Gov. Masari had used the medium of the consultative meeting to raise alarm on the relocation of hungry bandits, driven to the fringes, to communities to steal farm produce ahead of the upcoming harvest season. He called on the security chiefs present to wake up to the call and deal decisively with the criminals, who were neither fighting for a religious or ideological cause.