Give Amnesty To Bandits- Zamfara NASS Caucus Urges FG

The Caucus of lawmakers from Zamfara State in the National Assembly has pleaded with the federal government to grant amnesty to bandits ravaging the northern part of the country.

The group also wants the government to repatriate foreign bandits, rapists, kidnappers and other cross-border criminals operating in the crisis ridden north.

Briefing newsmen in Abuja, the Caucus called on the federal government to emulate the Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle, who launched an amnesty programme for bandits.

Led by Senator Sahabi Yau (Zamfara north central district) the group lamented that the scourge “which started in 2009 with cases of cattle rustling in isolated areas and villages had grown into full banditry, kidnapping, armed robbery and other forms of crimes.”

The group told newsmen that “Zamfara had become notorious for vices that defy logic. The insecurity in the state had assumed a dangerously galloping dimension.”

It equally revealed that as part of efforts to address the situation, the state governor adopted “a stick and carrot approach to dialogue with repentant bandits so as to reintegrate them into society, with the dagger approach meant to ensure that repentant bandits are made to face the full weight of the law.”

The Caucus asked for the use of the proposed Rural Grazing Area (RUGA) in each of the three senatorial districts of the state as a way to ending cases of cattle rustling and other forms of restiveness by youths, most of who are unemployed.

When questioned on the modality for the proposed amnesty for bandits, some of who are allegedly non-Nigerians, the group advised government to partner with stakeholders towards coming up with plans that would identify, separate and repatriate foreigners involved in the crime.