In a news bulletin it mischievously headlined, ‘Blame Service Chiefs Not Buhari For Banditry- Katsina Governor’, and aired on Saturday, August 15, Channels Television reported that Governor Aminu Bello Masari of Katsina State had blamed the Service Chiefs for the intractable security challenges bedevilling some parts of the country, notably armed banditry in the North West. The report was gleefully culled by a number of online publications, among them Sahara Reporters.
The Channels Television report emanated from an event earlier in the day in Kadandani Town, Rimi Local Government Area, Katsina State, where Governor Masari spoke during the presentation of N10 million economic empowerment to 1000 women and N7 million scholarship support to 700 students, organised by an indigenous philanthropist and MD/CEO of Continental Group, Alhaji Salisu Mohammed.
Curiously, in the video clip Channels Television showed during the news, there was nowhere the Governor made mention of the term ‘Service Chiefs’, not to talk about blaming them for anything.
Speaking about the raging banditry, the Governor had lamented that, since President Muhammadu Buhari had done all that was necessary expected of him towards addressing the insecurity issue, the rest was for the security agencies, community leaders and other key stakeholders to play their part well.
The Governor particularly expressed reservation about the indifferent attitude of parents, elders and community as well as religious leaders towards the conduct of youth, whom he castigated for being in too much hurry to get rich, even without the benefit of doing the right things.
He had also observed that the bandits were now camouflaging and living with the people, and those still in forest were being assisted by informants living among the people.
“We know them and their parents. To identify bandits in rural communities is not a difficult task, because you know his business, his farmland capacity, his livestock.
“And if one day he buys a new motorcycle amounting to over N200,000 naira, then you must know that he is selling people’s lives.
“If one day he buys a new motorcycle costing over N200,000, then you must know that he trades in people’s lives.
“The same goes for the informants, if their lifestyle changes for the better inexplicably, then be sure that they are up to no good”.
As for the personnel of the security agencies, not only did he commend them for the sacrifices they are making, he also expressed sympathy for them, as he observed that they too were humans who had their loved ones, and added that since they were not magicians, they could only succeed with the cooperation and assistance of the larger society in comming forth with, and providing them, germane information.
Abdu Labaran Malumfashi,
Monday, August 17, 2020.