Lai Mohammed backs Zamfara gov for granting amnesty to bandits


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The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed says those criticising Zamfara for granting amnesty to bandits were being unfair to the state government.

He said that as the Chief Security Officer of his state, and each state’s situation being peculiar, Governor Bello Matawalle was in the best position to determine what works best for his state.

Mohammed spoke Wednesday during an appearance on AIT‘s “Kaakaki” programme.

His comment came shortly after the announcement that the Zamfara State Government had granted amnesty to a notorious bandit,  Auwalun Daudawa, whose group abducted 300 students of Government Science Secondary School, Kankara in Katsina State in December 2020 but later released them.

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Reacting, Mohammed said, “When you are fighting insurgency, you use both kinetic and non-kinetic (means). Granting amnesty to notorious drug barons, notorious militants is not a new thing, it is not unique to Nigeria.

“You need to be in the shoes of the Zamfara State government or governor to appreciate what are the issues at stake (and) why he has done that. Don’t also forget that the state governors are their own chief security officers.

“When you are dealing with insurgency, kidnapping, banditry, you are interested in the bigger picture; how do we restore peace? If granting amnesty to one notorious kidnapper is going to give me peace in my state, I might take that decision. If granting amnesty to one repentant warlord would help me capture a thousand bandits, I might take that decision. Don’t just look at what is in the public place, understand the very high complexity of managing insurgency and banditry.”

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