•Asks AGF to mediate in Nigerian detained over drugs in S/Arabia
By Lateef Ibrahim, Abuja
President Muhammadu BuharI has directed security chiefs to, within the shortest time possible, flush out the bandits terrorising parts of Zamfara, Katsina and Kaduna states in orgies of kidnap for ransom, arson, murder and other forms of heinous banditry.
President Muhammadu Buhari has also directed Mr Abubakar Malami, the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice to immediately intervene in the case of Zainab Aliyu, the student, incriminated in drug related matters and being detained by the Saudi Arabia authorities.
The President spoke through Governor Aminu Bello Masari of Katsina State, who, in company of all security heads in the state, visited Yar Santa and Tsamiyar Jino villages in Kankara Local Government Area to condole and commiserate with the people over recent terrorist attacks on the communities resulting in the loss of lives and properties worth tens of millions of naira.
According to a statement by Masari’s media aide Abdu Labaran yesterday, the President condemned the activities of the bandits in strong terms, the President said the situation was unacceptable, assuring that the government is willing, ready and adequately prepared to deal with it, and will not spare anybody, regardless of their position, found to be complicit and complacent in the activities of the criminals.
“We will not hesitate to deal appropriately with anyone found to be connected, or in any way involved, in the activities of the bandits”.
He said peace and normalcy must return to the area, as securing the lives and properties of citizens is the sole raison’ deter for government, and failure to do that is tantamount to shirking the responsibility of the oath of office.
“Be rest assured that the government will not abandon you in your hour of need, because we will take the fight to the bandits where ever they may be.”
He expressed confidence that with the renewed determination of the government and the commitment of the security agencies, it was only a matter of time before the activities of the bandits is successfully contained, the same way the Boko Haram insurgency has been contained.
The President disclosed that security had been beefed up in the affected areas recently with the deployment of additional personnel, including over 100 policemen, the launching of special military and police operations on ground and air, as well as provision of additional formal and informal logistics.
The President however, noted that security was the business of everybody, more so that there is no sufficient security personnel to be posted to every part of the country in adequate measure.
On Saudi Arabia, a statement issued in Abuja by Abdur-Rahman Balogun, Media aide to Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Senior Special Adviser, SSA, to the President on Diaspora Affairs, said that, the President gave the directive two weeks ago when the matter was brought to his attention.
Dabiri-Erewa said, “President Muhammadu Buhari gave the directive immediately the matter was brought to his attention about two weeks ago .
“My office has been working with the AGF as well as the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in that regard”, Dabiri-Erewa revealed.
The Presidential aide assured that progress was being made in Zainab Aliyu’s case , along with two others in similar circumstances in Saudi Arabia.
Dabiri Erewa said that Zainab, though detained , has not been put on trial by the Saudi Arabia government. And with the hard evidence that those who implicated her have been arrested, a strong legal case is being made to the Saudi authorities
Zainab, a student of Maitama Sule University, Kano, had travelled from Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport (MAKIA) in company with her mother, Mrs. Maryam Aliyu, and sister, Hajara Aliyu.
She was later arrested over allegations that a luggage, bearing her name tag, contained the unlawful substance.
Zainab who was accused of entering Saudi Arabia with an illegal dosage of Tramadol was later discovered to be a victim of a cartel that specialises in keeping hard drugs in travellers’ bags, some of whom are already in the custody of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).