From: Femi Oyelola, Kaduna.
Seven days after 350 criminals terrorizing Anchau axis in Kubau Local Government Area of Kaduna renounced their criminal ways of life, another set of about 1,150 criminals which comprises of rustlers, kidnappers, armed robbers and gangster members have also repented of their ways.
The repented criminals who were gathered at Government Secondary School, Damau in Kubau LGA also swore by the Qur’an not to go back to their old ways of life but will rather help in convincing their old comrades to follow suit.
Speaking to newsmen at the venue, the Police Public Relations Officer, Kaduna State Command, ASP Mukhtar Aliyu said the criminals willingly reported at the venue after thorough discussion with community leaders, youth leaders and vigilante group members.
He added that the effort was part of the disarmament programme initiated by the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris and it is also a means of promoting Community Policing which is a project championed by the Commissioner of Police Kaduna State; Mr. Austin Iwar.
ASP Aliyu further said that those who renounced the violence also handed over their weapons to the government.
“If you want to solve a problem you have to work with people that created the problem. We held series of meetings with hunters as prelude to the series of activities we call Renouncing Violence Strategies,” he added.
Also speaking, the Head Vigilante Services in Kubau LGA, Mallam Audu Salau attributed to the success recorded so far to the commitment shown by the police and sought for support from Federal, State and LGA to end criminality in the hinterland.
He disclosed that those who repented did so voluntarily without force, saying the area has begun to witness relative peace since the programme commenced.
One of the repentant criminals, Shehu Kabiru who said he belonged to a 5-man kidnapping gang thanked the State Government and the Police for giving him an opportunity to start afresh in life and promised never to go back to his old ways of life.
Similarly, Bello Yahaya, a rustler said his mission now is to get other criminal out of the forest and repent.