From Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja

Governor of Zamfara State, Dauda Lawal, has raised the alarm over the escalating threat of banditry and kidnapping within the state.

He has, therefore called on President Bola Tinubu to urgently intervene and provide much-needed support to combat the growing insecurity.

Expressing deep distress over the recent surge in bandit attacks, Lawal emphasised the urgent need for increased military presence and resources in Zamfara State.

Speaking with State House Correspondents after meeting with President Tinubu at the State House, Abuja, he highlighted the alarming situation, stressing the necessity for immediate action to address the escalating security challenges faced by the state.

His appeal underscores the gravity of the security crisis gripping Zamfara State, urging swift and decisive measures to safeguard the lives and property of its residents.

According to him,  he was at the seat of power to brief President Tinubu on the security situation in the state, stressing that if nothing is done to arrest the situation, the whole of the northern part of the country will be in trouble.

He described the state as the epicenter of banditry that recently recorded several cases of banditry attacks in some local governments, despite all efforts the state government is exploring to end the criminal activities of the bandits in the State.

The governor explained that he requested more military personnel as well as the equipment that will enable the officers to function effectively enough to tackle the current security situation in the State.

“There have been several attacks in some of the local government communities. I feel as a responsible governor, I should make this known to Mr. President, who is pleased with the discussion we had and we are looking for more military personnel as well as the equipment for them to be able to function effectively and take care of the security situation.

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“Zamfara has become the centre of banditry as we speak today, and if nothing is done in Zamfara state , I don’t think we will be able to solve the situation in the entire northern Nigeria.”

Lawal, who confirmed that the abducted Kuriga schoolchildren and a few other victims of banditry were rescued in Zamfara, said this has  spurred the state to be more proactive to change the narratives.

“Most of the guys or the girls kidnapped in Kaduna state, ended up in Zamfara state that is not good for us, and therefore we’re doing everything to change the narratives and that is one of the reasons I came to see the president today.

“That is why I am here today. I have informed  Mr. President and I have his assurance that something drastic will be done to take care of the situation as soon as possible.”

State governors in Nigeria are not in charge of the military or the police, according to Lawal, thus the federal government is still in charge of giving orders to law enforcement and security officers.

“As you are fully aware, we as governors, we don’t have control over the military as well as the police. It is the responsibility of the federal government. Therefore, at any point, we need to inform Mr President so that we can get his blessing either to direct them or to do something else that will help them take care of that situation.”

The Governor also explained that the Community Protection Guard recently launched by his administration is intended to collaboratively work with the military and the police adding that they have a better understanding of the terrain.

“Like you rightly pointed out last month we launched what we call the Community Protection Guard and these are people that are well trained to take care of the security situation, together with the security operatives.

“They go out on their own on operation, they go together, either with the military or the police. And let me say this, these people are expected to understand the terrain better than even the military and the police.”