From Mathew Jwantu, Minna

Eight communities in Shiroro local government area of Niger State have been taken over by bandits in the latest series of attacks in the area.

District Head of Gurmana, Alhaji Aliyu Umar who raised alarm on the predicament of his people, said most of them are still in the bush hiding. He said he had received reports of some residents who have lost their lives due to snakebites.

He said “My people are suffering because of the attacks. Most of them are in the bush. Snakes are biting them, they are hungry and they are helpless.”

Reacting to the donation of relief materials by the state government, Alh. Umar said they did not want food from government but security, explaining that if they had security in place, they could have harvested their food items which are currently wasting in the farm.

“We don’t want food from government. What we need is security. I am calling on the Governor to provide security for my people. Our crops are wasting in the farm because of lack of security. My people cannot go to farm. We suffering,” the district head said.

On whether they have arrangement to engage local vigilante personnel in the fight against banditry, Alh. Umar said, “Do you think somebody with Dane gun can face somebody carrying AK47? If the government cannot provide my people with security, let them give us gun, and we will defend ourselves. We are ready to lay our lives to protect our women and children from the assaults by the attackers.”


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