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Bandits are undefeatable, grant them amnesty – Zamfara lawmakers tell governors

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Lawmakers from Zamfara State in the in the upper and lower legislative Chambers in the National Assembly on Wednesday called on governors of North West Nigeria to grant amnesty to repentant bandits and other criminal elememts, if there must be lasting peace.

The Zamfara lawmakers caucus who are of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) said negotiation and dialogue with bandits cannot be out of place in the obvious failed bid to defeat them through forceful approach.

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They said Zamfara State governor, Hon. Bello Matawalle used the approach and it worked, hence, they said, “carrot and dagger’ approach remain the best option, which was being recommended to other States in order to achieve peace in the troubled zone.

Leader of Zamfara National Assembly caucus, Senator Ya’u Shahabi who led other lawmakers at a world press conference in Abuja explained that there was relative peace in Zamfara State now because the State governor toed the part of peace when he invited bandits to a negotiation table that eventually led to the laid down of arms by the bandits. adsbygoogle || []).push({});

The lawmakers said, insecurity in Zamfara State was not the creation of the present administration, noting that it had lingered for eleven years until it grew into a full blown banditry, kidnapping and rape of citizens, lamenting that the previous administration didn’t defeat them because it never contemplated amnesty option.

They argued that amnesty was the way to go because it afford the State government to put in place infrastructure and address those things that forced them into criminality.

Shahabi said: “The insecurity in the State had assumed a dangerously galloping dimension prior to the assumption of office of Rt. Hon. Bello Matawalle as governor.

“This was in clear recognition that something new needed to be deployed, wisdom came into bear and governor opted for the carrot and dagger approach in dealing with this brand of crime that was fast growing at a geometric progression.

“The carrot approach was to dialogue with repentant bandits with a view to reintegrate them into the society, while the dagger approach was to ensure that the unrepentant bandits face the full wrath of law.

Reacting to concerns that some of these bandits and.ceiminal elements are foreigners, the caucus leader explained that foreigners among them might not be granted amnesty, which said, depended on the situation at hand.

They believed that peace in Zamfara would be sustained through the provision of modern cattle rearing facilities which the governor has put in place for the repentant cattle rustlers and other criminal elements.

In addressing the challenge, lawmakers said, governor Matawalle looked at it from a transhuman angle, and rolled out measures which they claimed worked well.

“The governor taught it wise to roll out other measures that would address the real causes of cattle rustling which metamorphosed into full banditry.

“To this end, the Governor quickly propose to establishment of one Rural Grazing Area (RUGA) in each of three Senatorial districts of the State with modern facilities that would usher in a 21st century method of cattle rearing and product development.”

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