The Zamfara State 6government has offered a one million naira reward for information leading to or the arrest of anyone in illegal possession of AK47 riffles in the state.
The gun is the weapon of choice for bandits who have been terrorising the state and left hundreds dead this year.
The state government also plans to set up an 8,500-strong vigilante group to assist security agencies in combatting insecurity across the state.
It announced the measures on Thursday after a Security Council meeting presided by Governor Abdulaziz Yari at Government House, Gusau, the state capital.
According to a statement by Ibrahim Dosara, spokesperson to the governor, the meeting resolved to take the measure “following recent waves of kidnapping and attacks in various parts of the state.”
He said shortly after the meeting, Mr Yari told journalists “the reward of One Million Naira to any person or group of persons that arrest any person or group of persons in possession of AK47 in any part of the State would go along way in reducing the number of AK47 in circulation and to a large extent, the rampant cases of kidnapping and other forms of crimes” across the state.
“Also, the council approved the recruitment of 8500 Vigilante Civilians known as JTF to aid the conventional securities in intelligent gathering, arrest and confrontation with the criminals.”
He said each of the JTF recruits would be given a monthly allowance of N15, 000 and other “routine allowances to make them courageous in their responsibilities.”
“Gov Yari further explained that the recruitment would be subject to screening by the conventional securities and based on the 17 Emirates in the state,” with each emirate recruiting 500 personnel.
“Gov Yari said this would enable each emirate to deal with its peculiarities quickly and accordingly.
“The governor further assured of his administration’s and the federal government’s commitments to end the security challenges facing the state, stressing that, more personnel and equipment are being provided by the federal government.”