At least, 13 people have been killed and many others abducted by bandits in attacks they carried out between Monday night and Tuesday morning in three Katsina State communities, residents told PREMIUM TIMES.
The three communities, Guga, Gidan Kanawa and Dukawa, are in the Bakori and Funtua local government area, all in the southern part of the state sharing boundaries with Kaduna.
Katsina State has witnessed frequent bandits’ attacks since the beginning of this year.
The police spokesperson in the state, Gambo Isa, had attributed recent attacks to fleeing bandits from Zamfara and Sokoto states.
Speaking to PREMIUM TIMES, Nafiu Muhammadu, said the village head of Guga, Alh Umar, was abducted while 10 people were killed in the attack.
“When they came, they started shooting sporadically and putting fire on shops in the community, which caused panic. When residents started running, some of the bandits started shooting, which led to the death of the 10 people I told you.
“The village head, despite the chance for him to run because his house is a little far away from where the attack started, came towards the bandits, asking his people to run. That was when he was captured. He was taken back into his house where some money and foodstuff were also taken,” Mr Muhammadu said.
He said only the village head was abducted. Those killed have not been buried yet.
Local sources told PREMIUM TIMES that the marauding bandits stormed Dukawa in Funtua local government Monday night and ran a house to house search.
An anonymous source, who is now seeking refuge in Funtua told this reporter that the bandits were possibly there to loot food.
“They did not kill anyone in the village but eight women and six children were taken by the bandits when they couldn’t get any meaningful food stuff. I was there and there was no attempt by the security agents to repel the attack despite the fact that we called the policemen stationed not far from the village,” he said.
The source, however, said negotiations have started for the release of the women and children.
The attack in Gidan Kanawa came hours after the one in Dukawa, all in Funtua local government area.
Attahiru Bala, another resident of Funtua, said the attack on Gidan Kanawa in which three people were killed in the village was a reprisal attack.
“My sister-in-law lives there with her husband. She told us that the bandits were frustrated by vigilante members last Saturday when they attempted to attack the town. But they regrouped and came back this morning around 1 a.m. and launched the attack. If not because of the resilience of the vigilante members who still confronted them and helped residents escape, the casualties would have been more than the three killed. But I was also told that several people were abducted,” he said.
Mr Bala said the three people were buried Tuesday morning in the area.
The command spokesperson in Katsina State, Mr Isa’s phone number was not reachable but a message was sent to him for comments on the attacks.
WATCH: Governor Yahaya Bello's Roadmap to Hope 2023