..Says, We Know Terrorists Locations

The Governor of Kaduna State, Mallam Nasir El Rufai, has said that reported cases of kidnapping and killings seem to indicate that the insecurity situation in the country is worsening.

El-Rufai said that while 937 people were killed and 1,972 people kidnapped in 2020, 1192 were killed and 3,348 were kidnapped in 2021.

El Rufai spoke while speaking at the weekly ministerial press briefing of the Presidential Communications Team in Abuja on Thursday.

El-Rufai said that the fear of being dragged before the International Court of Justice was responsible for the reluctance of the military to take ruthless action against bandits and terrorists in the North West.

He said that while he advocated that the bandits should be classified as terrorists, there was the seeming setback that they do not have structured leadership arrangement.

El-Rufai celebrated the recent court ruling, which recently declared the bandits as terrorists and made it legal for the security forces to subject then to legally acceptable reaction.

He called for simultaneous ground and air attacks in all the states hosting the criminals to prevent them from escaping.

The Kaduna Governor declared that the locations of the terrorists are known to his government.

He said his administration has invested in the technology that enables him know where the terrorists are in real time.

Geb called on the relevant bodies to wipe them out rather than the present piecemeal approach if the problem must be solved.

He also said the Fulanis who engage in the crime of banditry would not embrace the a voluntary withdrawal from it unless they forced to do so.

He said, this is because the bandits make far more money from the crime that the legitimate cattle business.

El Rufai said that the banditry and accompanying criminality in the North West is much more serious than the Boko Haram threat.

“I am persuaded that the insurgency in the North West is far more serious than Boko Haram both in terms of the numbers of the people affected.

“I have shown you the numbers in Kaduna. I can assure you that the numbers on Zamfara, and Katsina are up to three times this if they are keeping taps. The numbers in Sokoto, Niger, and Kebbi will be about this.”

El-Rufai, who said the terrorists seamlessly move to neighbouring states because of the vast forest range lamented that the efforts to tackle the abhorrent crime was uncoordinated

“Some state governors that thought that negotiating with the criminals would end the problem later realized that it was a mistake.”

The governor revealed that Northwest state governments began a process of cooperation and co-financing the military operation against cattle rustling but some of them backed out after some success was recorded only for kidnapping to take over.

The governor said that the security forces lack the adequate equipment in terms of personnel and equipment.

He underscored the need for coordinated solution and single-minded attention to defeat what he “a massive monster” that used better equipment than our security forces.

The governor said although a simultaneous land and air assault in all affected states might lead to the loss of innocent lives, his administration was willing to risk the collateral damage to secure Kaduna State and its environs.

With a budget of over N200 million every month, he said his state remains one of the most committed to security.

He said before the end of May 2022, Kaduna will be covered with CCTV cameras and facial recognition technology that would enable easy crime investigation.

The governor also clarified that the All Progressive Congress APC presidential ticket is yet to south west, saying it was still opened to all contestants in the South West, South East and South South.

El-Rufai while responding to questions on the zoning of the party approved by President Mohammadu Buhari on Tuesday, revealed however, that the zoning arrangements was to send signals about the party’s direction.

He said: “What we have done with the zoning we presented to Mr. President on Tuesday and which he approved, is sending a signal about the directions of the party, it is not about zoning the Presidency to anyone yet. But we have sent the signal.”

He, however, confirmed that the Presidency has been zoned to the South, added that “It is not zoned to any particular place in the South. But we are waiting to see who the aspirants are. A few people have declared their interest. We are waiting.

“I want to clarify that the APC zoning arrangements that we announced is the zoning arrangements for the party.
He disclosed that the party had always did that in the last three elections that it had.

“When we elected, John Oyegun as Chairman, we had this zoning arrangements. Each of the six zones had offices allocated to them. We also carried that along when we elected Adams Oshimhole as our National Chairman.

“All we did now is to flip it. Since the Chairman is going to be from North Central, it means that the North Central will take all the positions of South South.

“If you check, you will se that all the positions allocated to the North Central were the positions held by the South South under Oyegun and Oshiomhole.

Similarly, he revealed that all the positions held by North West, went to the South East and Vice verse.

Under the new arrangements, all the positions held by North West, will be going to the South East and those held by the North East, will go to the South West.

“That is why the South West will produce the Party’s National Secretary.

“We are not talking about the Presidency yet. When we do this convention and elect our national officers, then we start preparing for the party convention that will produce our candidates for National Assembly and the Presidency. That is when that conversation will come up”.

Speaking on whether he will support a South West candidate, el- Rufai said he would, support any qualified candidate from the south.

“I will support any APC candidate, if I am satisfied that he will do the best for Nigeria. It doesn’t matter if he is from South West, South East, South South.


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