As killings by non-state actors continued across Nigeria, at least 24 people were killed last week (November 21 – 27).
Majority of the victims were killed in the northern part of Nigeria with only two killings, from two cases, reported in the southern part.
One of the 24 victims was a police officer while the others were civilians.
PREMIUM TIMES compiled the incidents from media reports. Thus, unreported cases were not included.
The figure for last week indicates a decline in the number of casualties when compared to the previous week when at least 68 persons were killed.
Just like in the recent weeks, most of the incidents were perpetrated by bandits who have been terrorizing the North-west and North-central zones of Nigeria. There was however a case of communal attacks in the North-central during which ten people were killed.
Below is the breakdown of incidents:
A former gubernatorial aspirant in the 2019 election in Zamfara State, Sagir Hamidu, was killed by bandits along the Abuja-Kaduna expressway.
The late politician was shot dead by the attackers when they opened fire on travellers near Rijana along the busy expressway around 4 p.m. on Sunday.
A resident, Bashir Isa, told PREMIUM TIMES that the bandits, numbering over 100, stormed the village around 9 p.m. and started shooting sporadically.
Gunmen Tuesday attacked and burnt a police divisional headquarters in Arondizuogu in Ideato Local Government Area of Imo State.
The attack which happened around 2:00 a.m. left one of the police officers on duty dead.
Sources in the community disclosed that the attack left the Divisional Police Officer of the Division with a broken head after he was attacked by the invaders.
Also, a Sienna vehicle attached to the division and the DPO’s personal vehicle were vandalized by the gunmen.
Bandits on Thursday reportedly chased residents out of Yan Buki village in Zurmi Local Government Area of Zamfara State. Seven people were also reported killed and others kidnapped during the attack on the village.
Speaking to BBC Hausa as monitored by PREMIUM TIMES, a resident said the bandits stormed the village some minutes past midday.
A rights activist said to be a supporter of President Muhammadu Buhari, Kenechukwu Okeke, was burnt to death in Anambra State on Friday.
Mr Okeke was reportedly hit with machetes by his attackers numbering seven in his compound in Nkpor, in Idemili North Local Government Area of the state.
It was gathered that his assailants poured fuel on his body and set him on fire.
The wife told some journalists that her husband was killed by a former tenant.
On the same day, the police confirmed the death of 10 persons in an attack Friday morning by yet unidentified assailants in Te’egbe village of Bassa Local Government Area of Plateau State.
Many people were also injured and at least 30 houses were burnt in the attack, according to a statement by the police.
Governor Simon Lalong, while decrying the violence, vowed that those involved would be identified and brought to justice.
Change of strategy
Reacting to the incessant attacks by bandits, a security expert, Davidson Akhimen, advised that for success to be achieved, security agents need to change their strategies.
He said air surveillance is one of the best ways to curb the banditry along highways.
“It is actually an evolving situation and for as long as the strategy is not changed, we may continue to experience some successes on the parts of bandits and kidnappers.
“I think there should be a change of strategy with regards to the issue of bandits on selected or targeted routes, the known flashpoints, for example the Kaduna-Abuja road, some parts of the Kogi and Niger forests. These are places that are known.
“I believe the strategy with regards to kinetics should be changed, let us see more … arial surveillance, helicopters and then the deliberate deployment of ground forces along those routes right into the forest.
“No matter how much we deploy in terms of funding/finance of these operations, it is nothing compared to the advantages we stand to gain as a people.
“There needs to be a cooperation between air forces and ground forces at the known flashpoints because this is war and we shouldn’t treat these people with kids gloves.
“By the time we achieve success at every flashpoint, we’ll drastically reduce the incidents of kidnapping and banditry along these areas we have identified.
“Let’s stop paying lip service to what we say we are doing and let us start seeing results. Result is what matters,” he said.
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