From Femi Oyelola Kaduna
Following an intensive dialogue with bandits operating in the Anchau axis in Kaduna state and community leaders in the area, 750 armed bandits have turned a new leaf and sworn to forsake criminal ways of life.
The bandits who gathered in Anchau, headquarters of Kubau Local Government Area yesterday swore by the two holy books – Qur’an and the Holy Bible never to go back to their old ways of life.
Speaking to newsmen, Kaduna State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Austin Iwar said the success is as a result of Community Policing embarked on by the Command as directed by the Inspector General of Police.
He added that this is a window of opportunity opened to them by the government and the IGP.
Mr Iwar said the repented criminals have also promised to handover their weapons to the government which will be done in secret so as to build trust and encourage other criminals to follow suit.
He explained that the criminals were using the deep forest in the area to launched their nefarious activities on surrounding communities.
“If you want to solve a problem you have to work with people that created the problem; we also held series of meetings with hunters as prelude to the series of activities we call renouncing violent strategies.
“You will understand that it is a very difficult decision for a criminal to come to us in public and announce the atrocities he has been doing,” he said.
While administering oath of repentance on the Christians among the repented criminals, Pastor Sunday Michael of ECWA Church, Anchau District warned them of the danger of going back to their old ways of life as they have personally called on their Maker to invoke wrath on them.
Similarly, Mallam Bashir Abdullahi informed the Muslim repantants that swearing by the Qur’an and reneges is calling for Allah to vent his anger on them, which as mortal they cannot bear.
In his remarks, the head of Anchau Vigilante Services, Mallam Audu Sallau commended the security agencies for their support which led to the repentance; saying, none of them was forced to take the oath but they did it willingly.