President Muhammadu Buhari on Saturday night “expressed his sympathies and that of the nation to the Emir of Pokiskum, Umaru Bubaram” over a fatal attack on his convoy.
The president’s message was contained in a statement by his spokesperson, Garba Shehu.
The president, however, made no reference to the 30 people who were killed during the attack as well as the 100 who were kidnapped.
PREMIUM TIMES reported the attack which occurred along the Kaduna-Zaria Highway on Tuesday.
The police initially claimed six people including four of the emir’s aides were killed in the attack and five injured.
The police, however, admitted many people were kidnapped by the armed bandits who carried out the attack.
In his statement on Saturday night, the president made no mention of those kidnapped nor of the dozens killed. His only acknowledgement of the casualty was of the four aides of the emir.
“I feel greatly relieved that his Highness had survived this tragedy that resulted in the death of four of his aides during the attack,” Mr Shehu quoted Mr Buhari as saying.
The Potiskum emir, Umaru Bauya, had earlier narrated how he survived the attack.
The attack is one of many by armed bandits in Kaduna and other North-west states and highlights the worsening security situation across the country.
The president on Friday held a security council meeting with military and security chiefs to review the situation.
After the meeting, the Chief of Air Staff, Sadique Abubakar, told journalists at the State House in Abuja that the air force had acquired two helicopter gunships as part of the equipment to tackle the criminals including armed bandits in the North-west.
“Some of the equipment we are acquiring have started arriving. For the Nigerian Air Force, two helicopter gunships have arrived on the 15th of January and we are now in the process of putting them together which will add to whatever we have,” he said.
In his message Saturday night, President Buhari said his “administration remains firmly committed to the security of Nigerians and we will continue to fund and adequately motivate our security personnel in order to encourage them to respond vigorously to these challenges.”
Read the full statement by Mr Shehu below.
Buhari symathises with Emir of Pokiskum Umaru Bubaram over bandits attack.
President Muhammadu Buhari has expressed his sympathies and that of the nation to the Emir of Pokiskum, Umaru Bubaram over his encounter with bandits during his journey between Kaduna and Zaria a few days ago.
The President said “I feel greatly relieved that his Highness had survived this tragedy that resulted in the death of four of his aides during the attack.”
President Buhari sympathetically told the monarch that “I can relate with great empathy the kind of traumatic experience you had encountered at the hands of these evil elements in our society.”
The President assured the Emir and his people that “my administration would spare no efforts in tracking down these criminals who have become a nightmare in the lives of Nigeria, high or low.”
According to the President, “no criminal group would be allowed to hold the country to ransom” and that “the law would never surrender to mass murderers who engage in wanton destruction of lives and impoverishment of their victims.”
He assured me that “this administration remains firmly committed to the security of Nigerians and we will continue to fund and adequately motivate our security personnel in order to encourage them to respond vigorously to these challenges.”
The President also appealed to Nigerian communities to desist from obstructing law enforcement agencies in hot pursuit of suspected criminals.
President Buhari said reports saying that residents of the community where the attack on the Emir happened resisted the house-to-house search for suspects were unhelpful and did not speak well of the members of community.