Former Senator Shehu Sani says banditry in the last four years started with cattle rustling but the governors of the most affected states were simply playing politics when they should have been taking actions.
He also blamed the invasion of the Government Science College, Kagara in Niger State, where 41 people were abducted and one student was killed, on the government of the state.
Sani, an old student of the school, stated this on Thursday while commenting on the incident on ‘Journalist Hangout’, a show on TVC News. He said considering that about 80 percent of Kagara Local Government was controlled by bandits, the state government should have taken action.
“A responsible government could have predicted that that school is a target and could have done the needful. But it has always been that airforce has bombed some bandits and everyone should simply go to bed and sleep,” he said.
“What happened in Government Science college, Kagara, was the failure of the state government to have taken actions in terms of protecting the students or preventing such abduction by suspending the resumption of boarding schools in that local government.”
The former senator also said that the Niger State government ignored calls to ensure the security of the school and shunned measures to protect the students.
“How much will it cost a state government to construct a perimeter fence around the school? But now, that money they will say they don’t have to construct perimeter fence will be the one that will be used to pay kidnappers,” he stated.
He further claimed that because attention was not given to cattle rustling by governors in the Northwest of the country, it degenerated to banditry.
“Let’s be frank with ourselves, in the last four years, this banditry started with cattle rustling. When actions need to be taken, the governors of the states were simply playing politics. In the sense that they were pampering the issue, not taking serious actions at that infant stage of it and it was allowed to grow. It’s like a tumor; now it has spread,” Sani said.
“The states of the Northwest have all been consumed. It has moved to Niger; outskirt of Abuja is not safe… How long should we continue to wait before the whole of Nigeria is consumed by bandits?”
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