A team of Nigerian Air Force officers, led by Idi Lubo, an air vice marshal, on Friday arrived Zamfara State to investigate allegations that innocent citizens were recently bombarded through air strikes by NAF personnel in the state.
Addressing journalists on arrival at the 307 Quick Response Group headquarters in Gusau, the team leader, Mr Lubo, said “the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshall Sadique Abubakar is highly disturbed over the allegations.
“As concerned Nigerians and part of those charged with the responsibility of ensuring the peace and safety of Nigerians, we are here to verify the claims made by the traditional rulers of Zamfara.
“We will meet with all stakeholders in the matter, especially the state government, security chiefs and even the affected community members before filing our report.”
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the team had on arrival in the evening, met with the state director of the State Security Service and the Secretary to the State Government, separately, behind closed doors.
NAN also reports that the state’s council of chiefs had, a fortnight ago, accused the air force under the on-going Operation Sharan Daji of hitting wrong targets and killing innocent citizens instead of bandits.
Although the headquarters of the Nigeria Air Force had denied the allegations, the council followed the claim with the list of victims.
The state has been under bandits’ attacks in the last seven years, during which about 5,000 persons are said to have been killed, thousands of animals rustled and property either burnt or destroyed.