The surge of bandit activities in Niger State has reached an alarming level, with a military helicopter shot down and an increasing number of villagers fleeing their homes.
In a recent development, bandits invaded Chukuba Ward in the Shiroro Local Government Area, shooting down a military helicopter and killing the pilot. Mr. Sanni Kokki, the Convener of Shiroro Concerned Youths, reported that these criminals also ambushed and killed 13 soldiers along the Zungeru – Tegina road in Madaka Ward of Rafi Local Government Area of the state.
The banditry has caused mass displacement, with villagers moving towards Erena. This displacement is leading to a humanitarian crisis on top of the economic challenges faced by the people.
In the Wushishi and Lavun local government areas, farmers have reportedly fled their homes due to the increasing presence of bandits. The Chairman of the Niger State Vigilante Corps in Wushishi local government area, Ibrahim Iko-Iko, confirmed that the bandits have been in the area since Friday and have moved close to Lavun LGA.
Reacting to this escalating crisis, Senator Sani Musa, APC, Niger East, and Chairman of the Senate Committee on Finance, called on the federal government to urgently deploy military and security arsenals to the troubled areas in a bid to protect innocent lives and their properties.
No official statement has been issued by the Niger State Police Command regarding the recent incidents.
IMAGE: The Cable