At least 10 people were killed and houses burnt following a deadly clash between suspected bandits and residents in Talli, Dutsin Gari, and Rayau villages in Kanoma district in Maru local government area of Zamfara state.
Residents told our correspondent that the armed men on motorbikes stormed Dutsen Gari community with the intention to kidnap residents but met a fierce resistance from the already prepared villagers.
Gunfight between the villagers and the armed bandits ensued and it took several hours before the armed men were forced to leave the area.
The assailants then proceeded to Rayau village and fought the residents there.
“The armed men killed some prominent leaders of local vigilante groups there and carted away animals. Some of the residents in the communities who had earlier fled for fear of reprisal attack from the bandits had their houses torched by the attackers,” a resident said.
The spokesman of the state police command SP Muhammad Shehu could not be reached for comment at the time of filing this report.
An eyewitness also told the BBC Hausa Service on the phone that the bandits invaded the two towns on Monday.
“We pursued them to the bush”
He said later, members of the community decided to take action and followed the bandits to the bush where they are living.
“They just entered our villages shooting sporadically at people.
“We don’t have guns but we carried what we had and followed them to the bush to protect ourselves but they continued shooting people.
“They killed more than ten people.
“So far, we have seven of their corpses with us and we have to go to the bush and bring the remaining,” he said.
He added that the soldiers came after the attack and left without doing anything.
Speaking to BBC Hausa, Zamfara state commissioner of security and home affairs, Abubakr Dauran, said he received the report of the attack and sent security personnel to the area, adding that he was still waiting for their response.