Bandits have killed seven people in separate attacks on Igabi, Giwa and Chikun local government areas of Kaduna State, it was learnt on Thursday.
The bandits injured several people, destroyed properties and rustled many cows during the raids.
But many of the bandits were killed by troops in sweeping operations by ground and air patrols across Birnin Gwari, Igabi, Giwa and Chikun local government areas.
The State Commisioner for Internal Security and Local Government Affairs, Mr. Samuel Aruwan, who spoke on the development, said that in the first incident, armed the bandits stormed Gangi village of Igabi Local Government Area and shot sporadically in what seemed to be a cattle rustling operation.
According to him, in the process, four residents, identified as Wada Sulaiman, Amiru Saidu Yusha’u Mohammadu and Osama Abdulwahab, were killed.
Aruwan said: “Two others sustained gunshot injuries and are receiving treatment in hospital. They are Ibrahim Jibrin and Abdulhamid Suleiman.”
The commissioner said in the course of the raid, the bandits razed three houses belonging to Mohammad Jibril, Salisu Ya’u and Idris Muhammad. A pick-up truck belonging to one Umaru Saleh was also burnt.
“In all, 20 cows belonging to two residents of the village were rustled and herded away by the bandits,” he said.
In the other incident, the commissioner said armed bandits attacked Marke village in Giwa Local Government Area and killed one Rabiu Haruna.
He said: “Similarly, at Kuriga in Chikun local government area, armed bandits killed two people along the Buruku road linking with Birnin Gwari Local Government Area. The victims were identified as Ibrahim Yahu Birnin Gwari and Haruna Usman. Another victim, Mansur Dada, sustained injuries and is receiving treatment in hospital.
“Governor Nasir El-Rufai noted the reports with sadness, and sent his condolences to the families of those killed, while praying for the repose of their souls. He also wished the injured citizens a quick recovery.”
Speaking on the military raids on the bandits camps, Aruwan said: “Several aerial missions were conducted covering locations in Birnin Gwari, Igabi, Giwa and Chikun local government areas. These missions were carried out in tandem with ground patrols in the areas.
“The first aerial mission covered the Riyawa camp, which was engaged with rockets. Close air support was then given to troops of Operation Taimako Yazo along Kaduna-Birnin Gwari road, covering Polewire, Crossing Point, Koriga, Udawa, Buruku and environs. Normal activities were observed across all areas.
“Another pass was made over the Birnin Gwari area with an informant on board the aircraft to identify target locations. About 5-7km Northwest of Farin Ruwa, bandits’ hideouts were identified and engaged accordingly. Some bandits sighted fleeing the area were also neutralised.
“In a second mission, targets were identified around Riyawa camp and engaged. A third pass confirmed that strikes on the camps were well on target. The Riyawa axis around the Kaduna-Katsina inter-state boundary was also thoroughly scanned. Normal activities, huts and few heads of livestock were observed in the area.
“On the ground, troops of Operation Taimako Yazo and Operation Badamamaki conducted aggressive fighting patrols along the road to Ifira village and formed a blocking force at the Ifira River. The area was observed to be calm.
“Also, troops of Operation Taimako Yazo conducted day and night patrols along the Kaduna-Birnin Gwari road as well as Polewire and Udawa axes to clear hideouts and crossing points. Commuters were stopped and searched at intervals.
“Receiving the operational feedback, Governor Nasir El-Rufai thanked the troops and crews for the extensive joint missions and commended their thoroughness and commitment.”
The General Officer Commanding (GOC) 1 Division Nigerian Army, Kaduna, Maj.-Gen Danjuma Ali-Keffi, served the bandits with quit notice yesterday.
He told them to desist from their nefarious activities saying, “their days are numbered”.
Gen. Alli-Keffi took over from Maj.-Genl Usman Shehu Mohammed, who has been moved to Defence Headquarters, Abuja, as Director of Research and Development Bureau.
The Division’s area of operations covers Kaduna, Niger, Kano and Jigawa States.
The new GOC, who acknowledged the security challenges bedevilling his Division, expressed the determination to restore peace in in line with the Chief of Army’s vision.