Hassan Nasiha, deputy governor of Zamfara, says Bello Turji, the notorious bandit kingpin in the state, has repented and embraced peace overtures by the government.
He disclosed this while speaking at a conference on security organised by the Students Union of Medina University, Saudi Arabia, on Sunday.
According to him, the erstwhile bandit kingpin is now killing his unrepentant colleagues.
He said Turji’s repentance has brought about peace in Birnin Magaji, Shinkafi and Zurmi LGAs in Zamfara.
The deputy governor said Turji has met with bandits in the 14 LGAs of the state.
“In the last three months, there has not been any bandits attack at Magami district as a result of the peace initiative with bandits,’’ Nasiha said.
“Everyone knows the notorious bandits’ kingpin, Bello Turji who has operated on that axis.
“The state government through the peace committee entered into a peace deal with the bandits’ leader and he agreed to stop the criminality and to embrace peace.
“Turji is now killing unrepentant bandits who unleashed terror on innocent citizens in Shinkafi, Zurmi and Birnin Magaji local government areas.”
The deputy governor added that the peace committee set up by the state government met with nine bandit groups in their camps at Magami and Dansadau emirates where they raised their concerns.
“They said Hausas always attacked and raped their women, killing the Fulani on their way to or returning from markets,’’ he said.
Nasiha also said Zamfara has ordered the return of cattle grazing routes, lands, water for livestock and other property seized by Hausas to the herders.
He said the order must be respected by both parties in the conflict to enable the return of law and order in the communities.
Nasiha said the Fulani requested the government to consider freeing their youths currently in detention in correctional centres and in police cells.
“They equally requested for schools for their kids and other social services including fertilisers and farm inputs,’’ he said.
“They said lack of education would influence a 12-year-old Fulani boy to kill a 70-year-old man using AK-47 rifle