Governor Aminu Bello Masari of Katsina State has approved for the immediate reopening of all filling stations and cattle markets earlier closed down on account of cattle rustling and armed banditry in the state.
The governor however instructed the two Emirate Councils in the State to admonish District and Village Heads of the affected areas to be vigilant and ensure that no any act of connivance by Sarakunan Fawa and others is allowed.
A statement signed by the Secretary to the State Government, Mustapha Inuwa warned that Government would not hesitate to re-enact the closure where a resurgence of any dubious activity is noticed.
The filling stations and cattle markets were closed down since September last year as part of the Security Challenges Containment Orders signed into law by the Government to curtail the supply of fuel to bandits and the transactions on rustled animals in the State.
The two security containment orders include among others, closing two major roads: Jibia to Gurbin Baure and Kankara to Sheme.
In this new law, commercial vehicles were advised to take Funtua road but private vehicles can still fly the Kankara-Sheme road.
According to the laws, the governor also banned illegal junctions and motor parks as well as cattle markets in 14 LGAs: Jibia, Batsari, Safana, Danmusa, Kankara, Malumfashi, Charanci, Mai adua, Kafur, Faskari, Sabuwa, Baure, Dutsinma and Kaita.
He also banned movement of cattle in trucks and firewood from the bush including the prohibition of more than two people from riding on a motorcycle and more than three in a tricycle as well as sale of petroleum in jerry cans.
A popular second-hand motorcycles market in Charanchi was also suspended in the new law.
To cut fuel supply to the bandits who ride in convoys of motorcycles to attack communities, the governor said only two designated fuel stations in the banditry-affected LGAs can now sell fuel, and of not more than N5,000 to a person.
The Katsina State Government on Thursday engaged stakeholders to ensure that school campuses across the state are fully safe and secure against bandit attacks.
This comes as most tertiary institutions including secondary and primary schools in the state have fully resumed for the academic year.
In a strategic engagement with the stakeholders organised by the office of the Special Adviser to the Governor on Security Matters, several papers were presented on how best to enhance and guarantee campus safety and security.
The stakeholders, however, believed that without community participation, the existing security forces in the country are not enough to police the entire country. Earlier in his welcome address, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Higher Education Dr. Bashir Ruwa-Godiya observed that without security nothing good will take place and that conducive learning atmosphere will not be ensured.
Ruwan-Godiya, while describing the efforts of the State Government in coming up with the safety and security strategy as highly commendable, further urged the stakeholders to work together to ensure that the right thing is done by taking security as individual responsibility to ensure safe environment.
In his remarks, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Security Matters, Ibrahim Ahmad Katsina announced that the objective of the seminar is mainly to ensure campus safety for students and members of the academic environment as well as that of the communities.
According to Katsina, the State Government had since after the episode of Kankara Government Science Secondary School in December, 2020, been taking proactive measures to enhance security and ensure that such incidences does not occur again across not only the government secondary schools but also the tertiary institutions in the state.
“Actually, we realised that the best security we can have is through synergy. Without community participation, you hardly achieve the needful.
“As everybody knows that the number of security forces we have in the country cannot adequately police the country and without community participation hardly can we achieve the result.
“Another objective of the seminar is that secondly, we realized that if anybody wants to destroy your future, he will attack the education sector and that’s why kidnappers, terrorists or bandits are deliberately targeting our schools and we feel we should not allow it,” he explained.
In the meantime, the State Deputy Governor, Mannir Yakubu, traced the root cause of all the crimes which he believes has to do with drug abuse, stressing the need for the organisers to extend the seminar across all tertiary institutions in the state.
He explained that both the Federal and State governments have been doing their best to restore peace and normally.
The seminar, which was held at the Umaru Musa Yar’adua University, Katsina attracted heads of various tertiary institutions as well as that of the security agencies in the state comprising the DSS, the Army, the FRSC and the Police whose presentations focused on ways to improving security.
In particular, the Commander in charge of the Katsina State chapter of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, Muhammed Bashir, presented a paper titled: “Dangers of Drug Abuse To The Students”.
He also gave an assurance of the agency’s readiness to reduce the supply and demand of illicit substances going by the staggering statistics of arrests and seizures coming out from the state.
Bashir while presenting an executive summary on the drug situation in the state explained that out of the 395 total arrests made last year by the agency, 94 per cent fall between the ages of 15-40 with 83 of the sum total falling between the ages of 15-20 years arrested adding that 41 and above are six persons.
He revealed that one out of seven persons in Nigeria is into drug abuse and one out of four drug users is a woman.
Meanwhile, a cross-section of participants at the seminar appealed to the NDLEA to extend its collaborative network to stakeholders, stressing the need for the agency to be supported by the government.
Other participants, however, called on the government to deploy well-armed security personnel across the institutions of higher learning in the state or else enhance and train their existing private security personnel to ensure safety of the school environment.
Operatives of the Zone ‘B’ Strike Force of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) have intercepted assorted foreign sex drugs worth over N6million in Katsina State.
According to the agency, the drugs, all bearing fake NAFDAC registration numbers, were intercepted in Malumfashi and Jibia Local Government Areas of the State as part of the NCS’s ongoing war and zero-tolerance against smuggling.
They included 52 cartons of EJAC powder manpower alongside several manpower capsules such as Bobarak capsule manpower, Ginseng coffee manpower, Sacks manpower, Goldfly, gonorrhoea capsule, amipara plus capsule and hympashy capsule.
The coordinator of the Anti-Smuggling Team, Comptroller-General Oseni Aliyu Olorukooba, disclosed this to journalists in Katsina State while showcasing the recent achievements recorded within the period under review.
He itemised other contrabands seized with a Duty Paid Value of N104,788,000 to include 550 bags of foreign rice, 300 cartons of foreign spaghetti, 790 cartons of foreign soap concealed in noodles and biscuit’s cartons and a motorcycle.
Other items seized included 450 bags of 50kg each of foreign parboiled rice, 100 bags of 25kg each of rice, 300 cartons of foreign spaghetti, 790 cartons of foreign soap, 52 cartons of drugs and one motorcycle.
Olorukooba explained that the team has within the last quarter of the year successfully seized contrabands in the state with the Duty Paid Value of N110,890,000 adding that some suspected smugglers were equally arrested in the process but set on bail.
While assuring people of the state of the readiness of the strike force to adopt revolving strategies aimed at suppressing to the barest minimum smuggling activities in the country, he maintained that smuggling has adverse effects on the country’s economy and trading activities.
Laila Ahmed, the 15-year-old daughter of a former Director of Public Affairs at the National Broadcasting Commission and former General Manager of the Katsina State Television, has regained her freedom after 29 days in the den of kidnappers.
A source who pleaded anonymity told Channels Television that Laila was released in the early hours of Wednesday (October 5).
Laila and her father, Ahmed Abdulkadir, had both been abducted on September 6, 2021, from their residence located in Bakori Local Government Area of Katsina State.
But Abdulkadir had been released since September 10.
Family sources told Channels Television on Wednesday that the kidnappers had earlier requested a N70 million ransom for the release of the victims.
It is, however, unclear whether the ransom was paid to secure the release.
When contacted, police authorities in the state said they were yet to receive an official report regarding the release of the victim as a result of the recent shutdown of telecommunications services in Bakori Local Government Council.
At least 13 suspects have been arrested by the Police in Katsina State for alleged involvement in banditry, cattle rustling, kidnapping and arms smuggling as well as terrorising innocent citizens of the state.
Their arrest formed part of the recent achievements so far recorded by the State Police Command in the ongoing fight against crime and criminality in the state.
The Police Spokesman, SP Gambo Isah, paraded the suspects on Wednesday on behalf of the State Police Commissioner, CP Sanusi Buba, before the Command Headquarters in Katsina.
He said one of the suspects, identified as Surajo Mamman alias “KUTAKU” (50-years-old) Tulun Busawa village is a notorious kidnapper terrorising the state was arrested on September 16, 2021, at about 1300hrs.
The police have arrested nine suspects linked to kidnapping and supplying of fuel and food items to bandits.
A 22-year-old disabled man identified as Buhari Haruna of Kankia Local Government Area Katsina State was among the suspects.
Haruna was arrested on August 28, 2021, at about 12:00 pm after he was said to have sent a threat message to one Hamisu Saminu demanding the sum of two million naira.
The police spokesman, SP Gambo Isah, while parading the suspect at the Katsina Police Command Headquarters said the victim reported the matter at the Kankia Police Division where preliminary investigations led to the arrest of the suspect.
He said, “What happened was that the police advised the victim to comply with the suspect’s demands, and he mentioned a location where the two million naira ransom would be paid which our men succeeded in arresting him.
“Unfortunately, we saw this man crawling to get the ransom”.
Similarly, five commercial drivers were arrested for buying fuel in large quantities with the intent to take it to the forest to sell to some suspected bandits at an exorbitant price in the forest.
The command has also rearrested another suspect with a sack containing bread meant to be supplied to some suspected bandits after being warned severally to stop the business.
Furthermore, two youths have also been arrested for vandalising a transformer in the Bindawa Local Government Area of the state.
They were arrested after they stole an armoured cable valued at over ₦250,000.
Isah, however, called on the good people of the state to always report to the police or any other security agencies whenever they come across any threat of being kidnapped for immediate action.
All the suspects have confessed to their crimes pleading with the authorities to temper justice with mercy.
The police have paraded one Bishir Hayatu accused of stealing a Toyota Hilux Vehicle belonging to the Katsina State Government.
The 32-year-old suspect was arrested on August 27 at Dayi village in Malumfashi Local Government Area of the state while trying to take the vehicle to Abuja for sale.
Spokesman of the State Police Command, SP Gambo Isah, while parading the suspect said he specializes in stealing vehicles in the state.
He maintained that the stolen white Toyota HILUX Vehicle with Registration number (KT 76 B01) belongs to the Katsina State Government under the office of the Secretary to the State Government, Dr. Mustapha Inuwa.
“We immediately followed after the vehicle after the case was reported to the police. We used all our scientific methods in an effort to arrest the suspect,” he said.
Speaking further, Isah stated that some months ago the suspect was arrested and paraded for a similar offence bordering on car theft.
“He has been a customer with the police. He was released on bail by the court with regards to the previous case he had. This is because the case of theft is sometimes bailable offence,” he said.
The suspect had, during the police interrogation, confessed to being in the business of buying and selling stolen vehicles for a long period of time.
He, however, denied engaging in stealing vehicles.
“I am not responsible for stealing this vehicle, the man who stole it is Nigerien identified as Sani Maradi. After the man stole the vehicle, he asked me to take it to Abuja and my commission was N20,000.
“And with regards to my previous case, I am currently on bail,” the suspect said.
The Police in Katsina State have arrested several suspects in connection with banditry, cattle rustling and kidnapping.
They were arrested by officers on patrol while plying the Kankara-Sheme road in Dutsinma Local Government Area of the State.
While parading the suspects before the command headquarters on Wednesday in the state capital, the spokesman of the Command, SP Gambo Isah, said three suspected bandit informants were equally arrested between the Katsina and Zamfara border while conveying 80 assorted domestic animals on a canter vehicle to Abuja.
He explained that the three suspected informants are residents of Wanzamai village located at Tsafe Local Government Area of Zamfara State.
SP Isah further stated that four suspected thieves were arrested for vandalising transformers in Kaita Local Government Area and in Mahuta village of Dandume Local Government Area of the state.
In the meantime, an additional two suspected bandit informants and suppliers of fuel to bandits were arrested by the police while on patrol.
The suspects simply identified as Isiya Abdullahi and Usman Mamman – all from Danmusa Local Government Council of Katsina State – were intercepted while conveying two drums fully loaded with fuel on a Golf (III) vehicle.
Another suspected notorious bandit identified as Auwal Aliyu was also arrested for impersonating vigilante group members of Batsari Local Government Area of the state.
According to the police spokesman, the 32-year-old suspect and fugitive of Niger State has been on the wanted list of the State Police Command for his engagement in banditry, kidnapping and cattle rustling as well as feeding the bandits with information.
The arrests are part of the recent achievements recorded by the command in the fight against banditry, cattle rustling, kidnapping and other associated crimes in the state.
The Police have arrested 13 suspected criminals linked to theft, banditry and kidnapping in Katsina State.
Among those arrested was a 40-year-old man, suspected to be a bandits’ informant in Faskari Local Government Area of the state.
The suspect identified as Abdullahi Sani of Ruwan Godiya Village in Faskari LGA was arrested on August 12, at about 4:00 pm as part of the recent achievements recorded by the Command in the fight against crime in the state.
In a press briefing held at the command headquarters on Friday, the Police Spokesman, SP Gambo Isah, explained that prior to his arrest, the suspect was overheard discussing with a notorious bandit leader (Alhaji Ado Buji) over the phone, and was strongly suspected by the community to be an informant to the bandits.
Isah said that during the investigations, the suspect confessed to the crime and revealed that some time ago he was given the sum of N800,000 to buy essential needs for the said bandit leader and his camp.
According to Isah, the suspect also stated that one Mallam Mustapha Isah, from Ruwan Godiya village, Faskari LGA was the one who introduced him to the said bandits’ leader.
“He was later traced and arrested,” the police spokesperson said.
The suspect also confessed to running errands for the bandits and collecting the sum of N200,000 from the said Alh Ado Buji.
The command has also succeeded in arresting 13 other suspects including a fake officer of the Nigeria Correctional Services, errand boys of a notorious leader of a bandits’ group among others.
Governor of Katsina State, Aminu Bello Masari, has called on residents in the areas prone to banditry to acquire weapons and defend themselves against the outlaws.
While noting that prayers are important, the governor said it was morally wrong for people to submit meekly to the bandits without any attempt to defend themselves.
“We must intensify prayers with clean minds to seek God’s forgiveness and intervention.
“We must all rise up to counter the insecurity challenge, we must not seat and watch some people buying guns attacking our Houses, we too should buy the guns and protect ourselves,” he said.
The governor said this on Tuesday when he paid a condolence and sympathy visit to families of 10 persons who were killed after being hit by a Nigeria Customs vehicle.
He also believes that it is the people’s meek submission that emboldens the bandits to continue with their heinous activities, stressing that people must divorce their minds from the mistaken notion that security is the sole responsibility of the government.
Addressing the issue of the incident, Governor Masari assured the people that the government was perusing all the necessary legal steps to seek redress for the families of the deceased, as well as those who sustained various degrees of injuries.
He added that legal experts had already been consulted to advise on the way forward to ensure speedy (legal) resolution of the matter.
The governor, however, cautioned the families of the victims not to succumb to any covert enticement from the Nigerian Customs Service, saying that doing so will compromise the government’s efforts to secure justice for the bereaved and injured.
“What Customs operatives are doing is wrong, and therefore, unacceptable,” Governor Masari said.
“Do not succumb to any covert enticement from the customs service, no matter what they offer or promise to do for you.
“Whatever they want to do for you, let it be in the open, not in secret.
“If you accept any secret offer, then you will be truncating the government’s efforts to seek justice for you, but if you resist any untoward move, the organisation will then have to rethink its attitude towards its host community”.
At least 196 solar-powered water supply facilities have been constructed, upgraded, and rehabilitated across six local government areas in Katsina State.
The Minister of Water Resources, Engineer Suleiman Adamu, disclosed this in Bindawa, one of the beneficiary communities on Wednesday.
The rehabilitation exercise comes less than one month after President Muhammadu Buhari commissioned and handed over the recently completed Zobe Regional Water Treatment Plant Project located at Dutsinma Local Government Area of the state.
In addition to the new facilities, a training was organised for some selected water facilities managers under the PEWASH program.
The programme, otherwise called Partnership for Expanded Water Supply, Sanitation, and Hygiene, is an intervention that seeks to increase access to water supply and sanitation, for the achievement of SDG targets 6.1 and 6.2 by 2030, in the rural areas across the country.
Aimed at equipping the water facilities managers with basic knowledge, the training would assist them in addressing challenges that they may likely face in the course of discharging their duties.
Representing the minister, the Desk Officer in charge of the Ministry’s PEWASH Program, Mr. Namdam Nakyan, announced that the facilities provided will be 100% owned, operated, managed, and maintained by the beneficiary communities.
He said a total of 1,140 water supply facilities in 1,140 beneficiary communities were constructed, upgraded, and rehabilitated in 34 LGAs across the six zones in the country, under the 50% Federal Government component.
“It is, therefore, necessary for us to ensure proper utilization of the water supply facilities, to ensure continuous functionality of the facilities with a view to having an adequate supply of water to fight these diseases,” Mr Nakyan told the new facilities managers.
Earlier in his address, the Executive Director of Katsina Rural Water Supply Scheme Agency (RUWASSA), Engineer Aminu Dayyabu Safana, represented by the Agency’s Public Relations Officer, Abubakar Abdullahi commended the effort of the Federal Ministry of Water Resources for its intervention which he believed will better the lives and enhance the health status of the Katsina people.
Abdullahi, while calling on the beneficiaries to form community committees aimed at saving all funds generated from the water users in their respective communities to sustain and maintain the facilities, noted that socio-economic activities would not go on smoothly without a potable water supply.
Two of the facilities managers, identified as Hamza Yahaya and Abdussalam Abdullahi, described the project as a welcome development and one that has come at the right time when people in their community were hitherto experiencing water scarcity.
They thanked the Federal and state governments for the gesture and pledged to properly maintain the facilities and ensure their sustainability.
In March, the Katsina State Government had promised that it would lay a solid foundation to restore the entire water sector in the state, with a multi-billion naira water project aimed at covering 70 per cent of the Katsina population.
He said upon completion of the project, waterborne diseases, maternal mortalities, as well as the cost of medications among the Katsina residents will be reduced to the barest minimum.
He further revealed that the present state administration has successfully drilled over 1,700 boreholes across the 34 LGAs with each of the LGAs having at least not less than 50 boreholes.
The Police have recovered at least 300 rustled livestock mostly cattle, goats and sheep in Kaduna State.
The feat was recorded on Saturday evening after bandits riding on over 40 motorcycles stormed some villages.
They were said to have rustled the animals after raiding some villages in Safana, Kurfi and Dutsinma LGAs of the state between 17:00 and 20:00.
A combined team of policemen and vigilante group were, however, immediately mobilised and blocked the hoodlums at their exit route into the forest between Dagarawa and Tsaskiya. They engaged them in a fierce gun duel and recovered all the rustled animals.