In the same week that President Muhammadu Buhari claimed that Nigerians are more secure under his administration than that of his predecessor, at least 218 people were killed by non-state actors across the country.
The president in an interview on Channels television insisted that his administration had largely succeeded in tackling the country’s security woes.
The president’s remarks were despite persistent attacks on citizens in almost every part of the country.
Findings by this newspaper, as part of its weekly review of attacks by armed non-state actors, paint a different picture from what the president said.
Last week, between January 2-8, at least 218 people were killed in separate incidents across the country, compared to the less than 30 in the previous week. One of the incidents last week was in Zamfara State where bandits ransacked five villages and killed over 200 persons.
The total tally of casualties for the week was compiled by PREMIUM TIMES from media reports. Thus, unreported cases were not included.
Below are the recorded incidents:
Seven in Kaduna
At least seven people were confirmed dead in separate attacks in Igabi, Zangon Kataf and Chikun Local Government Areas of Kaduna State.
Two separate statements by the state’s Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, Samuel Aruwan, on Sunday confirmed the killings by suspected bandit terrorists.
200 in Zamfara
About 200 victims were buried as of Saturday morning after the attacks by an army of bandits on rural communities in Zamfara State, earlier this week.
PREMIUM TIMES reported how the bandits stormed five villages in Anka and Bukkuyum local government areas from Tuesday to Wednesday and left behind a trail of blood.
The bandits burnt down the five villages, killed many residents and mutilated their bodies. The survivors have since moved to communities in the headquarters of the two affected local residents.
Three in Plateau
Three persons were killed on Sunday in Rafin Bauna community of Bassa Local Government Area of Plateau the state.
The governor, Simon Lalong, confirmed the incident in a statement issued on Monday in Jos by his Director of Press and Public Affairs, Makut Macham.
Two in Niger
At least two security guards were confirmed killed on Tuesday as some gunmen abducted three Chinese nationals working at a hydropower plant in Zungeru in Wushishi Local Government Area of Niger State.
Witnesses said the gunmen kidnapped the expatriates who were working on a transmission line tower in Gussase village, after a firefight with security agents.
Three in Akwa Ibom
There was tension in Afaha Oku, Ikpa community, in the Uyo Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State, following the killing of two scrap collectors in the community.
The report gathered that the victims were lynched in retaliation for their alleged involvement in the death of an indigene, identified as Anietie.
Three in Ondo
Gunmen reportedly shot three persons dead in Molege, an agrarian settlement in Ose Local Government Area of Ondo State.
The men were said to have stormed the area at about midnight on Thursday, setting some houses and farms ablaze.
In the interview on Channels television aired on Wednesday and monitored by PREMIUM TIMES, President Buhari insisted that insecurity has reduced under his government when compared to previous governments.
Mr Buhari, while reacting to a question on the worsening security situation across the country, preferred to focus his attention on the North-east
“If you ask anybody from the North-east, there were a number of local governments that were in the hands of BH or ISWAP. None of these local governments now are in their control.”
He also said the armed forces have recorded a number of successes in recent weeks in the North-west and North-central in the fight against banditry.
“Within the last four weeks, there are improvements in the North-east and North-central,” Mr Buhari said.
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