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I’ll name officials in Tinubu’s govt negotiating with bandits — Gov Lawal

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Bola Tinubu

Angry Zamfara State governor, Dauda Lawal, has threatened to name Federal Government officials who allegedly convened secret meetings with bandit groups in the state.

In the wake of students’ abduction in the Federal University, Gusau, the governor accused some federal government officials of allegedly holding secret negotiations with bandit groups in the state.

Mr Suleiman Idris, the spokesman of governor Lawal, in a statement had said the negotiation initiated by the federal government officials was undermining the state’s kinetic resolve to root out banditry in the state.

Although, the minister of information and national orientation, Mohammed Idris, in a counter statement, dismissed the governor’s claim, warning him not to politicize security issues in the state.

While responding, Mr Lawal, in another statement on Tuesday, insisted that he had evidence to back up his claim.

He added that the minister should have conducted a thorough investigation before discrediting the state government.

“We sought clarification from the Federal Government regarding the sneaky negotiations with bandits carried out by some of its agents without recourse to the state government and heads of Security agencies in the State.

“We have facts and evidence on what had transpired between these agents of the Federal Government and the bandits during the negotiations in several places across Zamfara.

“It is disappointing that the information minister discredited our claim without verifying it first. What is expected of him as a professional is to collaborate with relevant authorities to substantiate the claim’s authenticity.

“Zamfara State Government respects protocol and established authority. We would not come out in the media to start exposing the names of the federal government agents involved in the covert dialogue with bandits.

“We want to clarify that those individuals leading secret negotiations with bandits in Zamfara are politicising insecurity, not the state government.

“The Information Minister’s statement claiming that there were no negotiations between government officials and bandits in Zamfara requires further clarification.

“We have already exposed a few locations where such talks were held with bandits, such as Birnin Magaji, Maradun, Mun Haye, Ajah, Bawo, and Bagege.

“Negotiating with bandits in Zamfara is a grave mistake we cannot afford to make. It is not the solution to the problem and only encourages and emboldens the criminals.

“We urge the Federal Government to take a firm stance against such activities and investigate the motives of those who engage in them.”

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