The Nigerian Senate on Wednesday urged President Muhammadu Buhari to declare bandits as terrorists to support security agencies in waging war against the criminal elements.
The Upper chamber also asked President Buhari to declare all the known leaders of the bandits wanted and track them wherever they are for arrest and prosecution.
The directives were part of resolutions adopted following a motion moved by the Senator representing Sokoto East, Senator Ibrahim Abdullahi Gobir, and eight others.
The Senators lamented the huge human and material casualties orchestrated by bandits believed to be mostly of Fulani ethnic stock.
Senator Gobir, particularly said, his senatorial district has become a safe haven for bandits fleeing from the current military onslaught in Zamfara State.
Gobir recalls the killing of 21 security personnel on Saturday in Dama and Gangara, during attacks that left a yet to be ascertained number of civilians either dead or kidnapped.
According to the lawmaker, the latest incident highlights the magnitude of the problem, a matter which he stressed requires the declaration of total war on banditry.
Senator Gobir added that it is sad the nation keeps losing such a number of trained officers at the hands of bandits, a trend which he asserts will jeopardise the security architecture of the country if not properly handled.
While noting that reinforced military operations are forcing bandits to move from Zamfara State into Sabon Birni and Isa Local Government areas of Sokoto State, the lawmaker urged the Government to ensure that the onslaught against the marauders is well coordinated.
“The operation should be holistic instead of restrictive in order to produce effective and the desired results”, the Senator stated
In his contribution, Senator Kabir Gaya representing Kano South Senatorial District and former governor recalled that Senate has severally invited Security Chiefs to the hallowed Chambers to know their challenges which, initially was funding.
After the funds were provided, it is unfortunate that insecurity persists to the consternation of all, Gaya lamented.
He said plans were afoot by bandits to massively invade the Federal Capital Territory.
“There was an intelligence report that very soon bandits would invade Abuja and this should give room for concern. In Southern Kaduna on Tuesday, there was an attack on communities where about 34 lives were lost. I, therefore, supported the motion”, he said.
Also, Senator Uche Ekwunife bemoaned insecurity in the South East stressing that there was a need for the quick intervention of the Federal Government before it became too late.
”Mr. Senate President, you recalled that when you were campaigning to become Senate President, you promised to take the issue of insecurity seriously” she said.
She further lamented the escalating insecurity to the extent that in South East, assassination and kidnapping has become the other of the day, asking that President Muhammadu addresses the nation.
After contributions, the Senate among other resolutions asked the FG to declare leaders of bandits wanted and be tracked wherever they may be.
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