Zamfara Okays Death Penalty For Bandits, Kidnappers

Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle, briefs State House correspondents in Abuja on January 17, 2022.

 

As part of measures to tackle insecurity, Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle, has okayed the death penalty for bandits, kidnappers among several others.

The governor signed the law on Tuesday in Gusau, shortly after the House of Assembly recommended the death penalty for criminal elements.

After signing the bill for the prosecution of banditry, cattle rustling, cultism, kidnapping and incidental offences into law, Matawalle said the law will serve as an instrument to prosecute offenders of the crimes in the state.

READ ALSO: Insecurity: No Need To Arm Yourselves, Uzodimma Tells Imo Residents

He restated that the conventional security forces are operating in the various theatres, and they are not only overstretched but lack the modern war equipment to prosecute bandits and insurgents.

The governor stated that those who criticise the Zamfara State Government’s decision to support people to bear firearms for self-defence against the ruthless terrorists ought to take into consideration the scale of the problem the people are facing.

This is even as he reiterated his administration’s determination to go to any length within the precincts of the law in order to secure the state and restore peace in the communities and place the Zamfara on a sound trajectory of development.

He emphasised that the executive order number 7, 8, 9 and which he had signed into law last year will provide a legal instrument of operations for the four special committees he inaugurated on Thursday, 27th June 2022 to ensure the security measures put in place.

The law stated that anyone who is guilty of banditry, cattle rustling, cultism, and kidnapping is liable to the death penalty.

It also said that anybody aiding and abetting the crimes is liable to a life sentence or  imprisonment of 10 or 20 years

Zamfara Governor Cannot Instruct CP To Issue Gun Licences – General Irabor

 

The Chief of Defence Staff,  General Lucky Irabor, has stated that the Zamfara  governor, Bello Matawalle, lacks the powers to instruct the Commissioner of Police of the state to issue gun licences to the public

This comes off a directive contained in a statement by the Commissioner for Information, Mr Ibrahim Dosara, on Saturday, mandating individuals to prepare and obtain guns to defend themselves against bandits.

But speaking in an interview at the Joint Exercise for the National Defence College and War Colleges of the Armed Forces of Nigeria, code-named “Exercise Grand Nationale,” in Abuja on Monday, General Irabor expressed his disapproval at the measures taken by Governor Matawalle to secure his state against insurgency.

“I do not think that is the right way to go,” he said firmly. “The basis for asking citizens to bear arms; I am yet to know I believe that the Attorney General of the Federation will look at the constitution, what the laws say and what the powers of the Executive governor are to be able to do with this.”

READ ALSO: [Banditry] Individuals Now Allowed To Obtain Guns For Self-Defense – Zamfara Govt

The 56-year-old also faulted the directive asserting that the first citizen of Zanfara state failed to use the available resources at his disposal to mitigate the insecurity issues within his domain.

“If what I read is true, I do not think that the governor has the power to instruct the Commissioner of Police to issue licenses because the commissioner of police does not have the right to issue licenses,” Irabor said.

“There are other legal issues other issues of governance that the governor could have addressed using the instrumentalities of the law available to bring greater peace and security.”

Irabor also clarified the position of the Armed Forces in the current administration, adding that it was not subject to directives from the state governments.

“The armed forces are only an instrument of policy implementation,” the CDC added. “We do not take instructions from State Government, we have a Commander-In-Chief, and the constitution gives the right and the powers to the commander-in-chief.”

“So, we are there because we are there to give support to the civil authority, in this case, the police.

“We do not need to restate what the issues are that have led to the deployment of the military across the country but then like I said, we are doing the very best to ensure that peace returns to every part of the country,” he said.

All Abducted Zamfara Residents Will Be Rescued, Matawalle Assures Families

File photo of Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle

 

Four days after bandits kidnapped 50 wedding guests travelling along the Sokoto-Zamfara road in Gusau, Governor Bello Matawalle has assured that they will be released.

The Zamfara governor decried the rising cases of banditry in the north-western state where several people have been killed with many others abducted.

In a statement by his media aide, Zailani Bappa, the Zamfara leader said his administration has taken steps in arresting the security situation in the state.

Matawalle appealed to families of kidnap victims to have confidence in the state government’s ability to curb banditry in the bud.

READ ALSO: Bandits Abduct ’50 Wedding Guests’ Along Sokoto-Zamfara Highway

“This singular incident marks another sad moment in the fight against the security challenges we are facing in our dear state,” the governor was quoted as saying.

“I appeal to the families of all abducted persons to have confidence in our ability to do all that is needed to be done in rescuing their dear ones.

“I have directed all security agencies for the speedy location of the abducted persons and will, in sha Allah, be rescued.”

According to him, the state government will not tolerate any act of indiscipline from unscrupulous persons who want to manipulate the present situation to score cheap political goals.

He warned that his administration will no longer fold its arms and allow heartless people to go on manipulating the misfortune of innocent citizens for their selfish political ends.

“We are a responsible Government and we shall not relent in ensuring the safety of all our citizens at all times. We shall not condone calculated political sabotage or vagaries and indiscriminate abuse of privileges to jeopardize our fragile security situation in the state” Governor Matawalle warned.

“We have noted the rise of informants’ activities leading to many unfortunate banditry attacks on soft targets. We shall take more stringent steps in addressing the current situation, including possible communication shut down once again,” Governor Matawalle added.

Governor Matawalle Wins APC Governorship Primary In Zamfara

A file photo of Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle.

 

Governor Bello Matawalle has emerged the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Zamfara State.

The Chairman Electoral Committee for the APC governorship primary election in the state, Babagana Tijani, announced that Matawalle polled 733 votes to emerge as the winner of the primary election.

The governor secured the ticket for his second term bid unopposed as other aspirants in the race withdrew from the contest as a result of the consensus arrangement which the APC in Zamfara State adopted as the mode of the exercise.

READ ALSO: Nwifuru Wins Ebonyi APC Governorship Primary

At the primary, 735 delegates voted with the governor getting 733 votes, while two votes were invalid.

Reacting to the outcome of the exercise, Governor Bello Matawalle thanked the delegates for voting for him to be the candidate of the party in the 2023 general election.

He promised to work with party faithfuls and supporters to deepen democratic practices in the state.

The exercise was carried out without rancour in the presence of security agents, representatives of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, and the media.

Take Battle To Bandits’ Doorstep, Matawalle Urges Military

 

Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle has called on the military to persist in taking the battle to the bandits’ doorstep as a major panacea to the lingering insurgency in the state.

Governor Matawalle made the inference when he received a visiting team from the Army War College of Nigeria who were on a study visit to the Operation Hadarin Daji in the state.

Matawalle was of the opinion that if the military adopts total pro-active measures, the issue of banditry in the state will soon become a history.

READ ALSO: Gunmen Abduct Foreign Contractor In Ondo, Kill Driver And Soldier Attached To Him

“The tactics you supposed to do as at now is not for you to be waiting for an enemy to attack, is for you to take battle to their doorstep because Army are not supposed to wait for enemy to attack them, rather they take battle to doorstep of the enemy.”

He however, acknowledged that the Military is overstretched and also in need of more modern equipment at the moment.

“We understand that the Military is overstretched due to the multiple security challenges facing the Country as a result of which all the men in the service are currently engaged,” Governor Matawalle observed.

He however, advised that retired Military officers be re-engaged into the service while the Government further pursue its laudable efforts at acquiring more modern equipment to address insecurity in the country.

The governor while further commending the efforts Of the military in the state over the years, assured members of the Army War College that he will continue to give his utmost support towards their operations until peace is restored in Zamfara State.

Matawalle Distributes 260 ‘Brand New Cars’ To Traditional Rulers In Zamfara

A cross-section of brand new cars gifted to traditional rulers in Zamfara State in April 2022.
A cross-section of brand new cars gifted to traditional rulers in Zamfara State in April 2022.

 

Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle has distributed 260 assorted cars to all the traditional rulers in the state.

The distribution was performed by the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar at the Government House in Gusau.

Governor Matawalle said the gesture was done in recognition of the status of the traditional institutions as the custodians of our religion and culture and vehicle of cohesion and peace in our societies.

READ ALSO: Bandits Have Displaced 700,000 People In Zamfara – Govt

“It is in view of the high esteem with which my administration regards our traditional leaders and institutions that we decided to procure brand new cars, Cadillac 2019 Model, for 17 Emirs, 13 Senior District Heads and 230 District Heads across the State”, the Governor said.

Governor Matawalle assured that his administration will continue to work with traditional and religious leaders to ensure lasting peace and harmony in the state.

“I would like to assure you that my administration will continue to work in line with the mission of uplifting the dignity and sanctity of our traditional institutions through all possible means,” he said.

“We are currently rehabilitating and reconstructing some of the palaces of our emirs across the State. Some of these projects would soon be completed.”

Marafa Asks Court To Nullify Zamfara APC Congresses Conducted By Matawalle Faction

Logo of a court gavel

 

The Zamfara State High Court has adjourned the suit filed by Senator Kabiru Marafa against the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) to March 14 for further mention.

Marafa is challenging the illegality and exclusion of members of his faction from participating in the state congresses of the APC after they had purchased forms.

The presiding judge, Justice Bello Kucheri after listening to both parties, adjourned the case to 14th, March for an extension of time for the defendants to adopt counter-affidavits and written addresses and for the plaintiff to present preliminary objections.

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The lead counsel to the plaintiff, John Shaka said the National Working Committee of the APC, state, local government and ward levels in Zamfara are illegal and unlawful.

He claimed that the APC leadership is acting as if the party does not have a constitution which is the guiding principle of the party affairs, which is why his client is in court to challenge them to adhere to the constitution of the party.

Counsel to the APC, Shiaka Dikko, said certain applications were granted by the court and subsequently adjourned the matter for further mention.

He also said his client had asked for an extension of time to come with an application to challenge the jurisdiction of the court to entertain the case and the plaintiff does not have the locus standing to institute a suit against the APC as he is not a member of the National Working Committee and did not participate in the state congresses.

Court Dismisses Suit Seeking To Remove Matawalle As Zamfara Governor

A file photo of Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle.

 

A Federal High Court in Gusau has struck out a suit seeking to remove Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle, from office.

Some members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state had filed the suit against the governor over his defection to the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Presiding over the case on Monday, Justice Bappa Aliyu said the court lacked the jurisdiction to hear the case.

He, however, held that since it was neither a pre-election nor post-election matter, the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria does not prohibit a governor from defecting from a party.

READ ALSO: Senate Passes Bill To Increase Number Of Law School Campuses

The judge added that the constitutions of the APC and PDP do not make it unlawful for a governor to decide and defect to any other constitutionally recognised political party operating within the country.

He stated that the suit should have been filed before an election petitions tribunal, if it were a pre-election case, stressing that only the tribunal or the State House of Assembly has the power to remove the governor on the grounds of defection.

 

APC Rejoices

In its reaction, the national leadership of the APC hailed the judiciary for defending the Constitution and what it termed the popular mandate of Governor Matawalle.

“The Federal High Court (Gusau Judicial Division) in dismissing the suit challenging Bello Muhammad Matawalle Governorship of Zamfara State upon his defection from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the All Progressives Congress (APC), said the whole case was “devoid of merit,” the party said in a statement by its national secretary, John Akpanudoedehe.

“Based on Monday’s judgement, the honourable court held that there is no provision in the 1999 Constitution (as amended) which states that a Governor will lose his seat whenever he defects to another party other than the political party upon which he was elected.

“That Governor Bello Muhammad Matawalle has the right to assembly and association with respect to joining or belonging to a political party. In exercise of his right of freedom of association guaranteed under section 40 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), he can defect to any party of his choice and still maintain his seat as the Governor of Zamfara State.”

The APC congratulated Governor Matawalle on his affirmation by the court, saying the development would boost his administration’s effort in tackling the security challenges in Zamfara.

Zamfara Govt Compensates Families Of Slain Police Officers With N7m

A file photo of policemen.

 

The Zamfara State Government has compensated the families of seven police officers killed by the bandits in the state with N7 million.

Channels Television had reported how seven policemen were ambushed and killed by suspected bandits along Tofa – Magami road, setting their patrol vehicle ablaze on November 8, 2021.

The Commissioner of Police in the state, Ayuba Elkana distributed N1 million each to families of the seven affected police operatives.

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Elkana said the state government, under the leadership of Governor Bello Matawalle, donated the sum to the families of the seven officers who died in the line of duties to reduce the hardship being faced by the families as a result of their demise.

He explained that the police officers paid the supreme price when gallantly fighting banditry activities in order to restore peace and order in the north-western state.

According to the police commissioner, the affected policemen were Jonah Markus, Solomon Abiri, Stephen Ishaya, Nura Ibrahim, Abdul Garba, Musa Lawal and Zubairu Sadiq.

The CP stated that the welfare of officers and men of the Nigerian Police Force is top in the priority of the Inspector General of Police, Alkali Baba, especially those who died while protecting the country from criminals and criminalities.

Zamfara Killings: APC Governors Visit Matawalle

 

The governors of the All Progressives Congress (APC) have visited Zamfara State Governor, Zamfara, Killings over the recent killings in the state.

Last week, bandits raided some villages in Bukkuyum and Anka local government areas of Zamfara and killed over 58 people, dealing a heavy blow to authorities struggling to restore order.

According to the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Sadiya Umar Farouq, more than 10,000 people were displaced in the attack with scores still missing.

A few days after the incident, Governor Atiku Bagudu and his Katsina State counterpart, Aminu Masari were in the state to commiserate with the government and people of the state.

Speaking on Wednesday at the Government House in Gusau, Governor Bagudu said that despite some positives by the federal and state governments, massive cooperation is vital to combat the threat.

READ ALSO: Gunmen Abduct Another Zamfara College Official In Gusau

Bagudu stated that in the last few years, a lot is being done to address the security challenges facing the country, and more resources, community mobilisation, support is still needed to flush out the terrorists.

Chairman of the Progressives Governors’ Forum, Atiku Bagudu leads other governors on a condolence visit to Zamfara State on January 12, 2022.

 

In his remarks, Governor Masari observed that the efforts and commitment of the government towards tackling banditry must be complemented with the support of the people through the provision of credible intelligence to authorities to help fish out the perpetrators of criminality.

“We are all in this together, nobody is left out. We must conquer, reclaim our territories,” the Katsina Governor said.

“We have no choice, we must stand up. We need to mobilise ourselves and cannot allow some few individuals to totally disrupt our own lives, kill us, destroy our economic fortunes.”

On his part, the host governor said his administration will not rest on its oars to stop the incessant attacks on residents and ensure peace returns to Zamfara State.

“We will continue to do everything within our powers to achieve our objective of restoring peace in our domain,” he said.

Matawalle said that the military campaign against the bandits is already yielding positive results in the north-western state.

Matawalle Lifts Suspension Of Telecom Services In Zamfara

A file photo of Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle.

 

Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle, has announced the suspension of the ban on telecommunications services in the state.

He made the announcement on Saturday at an event in Gusau, the state capital, where he stated that the resumption of telecommunications services would begin on Monday.

“I want to announce today (Saturday) that we have taken a decision to lift the ban on telecommunications in the state,” the governor was quoted as saying in a statement by Zailani Bappa, his Special Adviser on Public Enlightenment, Media, and Communications.

“God’s Willing, as from next Monday we shall have that effected.”

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He explained that the decision to suspend the measure was informed by the encouraging report of peace attained in the nooks and crannies of the state.

Governor Matawalle, who made the announcement at the convention of the state chapter of the All Progress (APC) held at the trade fair complex in Gusau, believes bandits have taken the desired toll meant by the measure.

He thanked the people of the state for their patience and perseverance throughout the trying period and assured them that his administration would continue to take any measure necessary to preserve peace and protect their lives and property.

At the conclusion of the convention, the governor called on APC members in the state to extend their support to the new executive committee members in the state.

The convention was chaired by the Planning Committee Chairman from the National Headquarters of the APC, Ibrahim Masari, who announced a consensus of the party in all the 36 elective positions.

Senator Sahabi Yau, who represents Zamfara South senatorial district in the National Assembly, moved the motion for consensus, and it was seconded by a frontline member of the party in the state, Sani Jaji.

Mr Tukur Dan Fulani Gusau was returned as the newly elected chairman of the APC in Zamfara while Mr Ibrahim Dangaladima emerged as the new secretary of the party in the state.

The new EXCO members emerged after the Caretaker Committee of the party under Senator Hassan Nasiha was dissolved via a motion moved by a former governor of the state, Mamuda Shinkafi.

Matawalle’s Faction Holds Congress Across 147 Wards In Zamfara

Participants at the APC Ward Congress in Zamfara State on November 13, 2021.

 

The Zamfara State chapter of All Progressives Congress (APC) has elected officers that would steer the ship of the party in the state at the ward level for the next four years

APC which has the Governor of the State, Bello Matawalle as leader of the party conducted its congress across all the 147 wards in the state.

The National Headquarters of the party’s Committee Registration, Revalidation and Congress led by Ibrahim Masari said any member of the party who does not register under its committee and did not participate in the congress under the supervision of the Committee should not consider itself as a member of the ruling All Progressive Party APC in Zamfara

READ ALSO: No Matter The Persuasion, I Won’t Join Another Political Party – Obaseki

He said that the APC is committed to free, fair and credible Ward Congress which will also determine how successful that of the local government and state chapter will be conducted.

A chieftain of the party in Zamfara State, Abdullahi Shinkafi also rejected any other congress by another faction of the party in the state.

He said a faction of Senator Marafa in the state is no longer in existence and noted that, if the other factions hold a similar congress in the state, there is no cause for alarm for governor Matawalle’s faction of the party.

Channels Television monitored the Congress in Some wards in Tatala Mafara, Kaura Namoda, Tsafe and Gusau local government areas

The Congresses were conducted in a peaceful manner and the majority of the party officials were elected through Consensus by all aspirants and was accepted by all members of the party through raising up their hands.