President Muhammadu Buhari has ordered the military to identify and kill bandits carrying out attacks across the country.
The President gave the charge in Katsina State while addressing 15 officers and 160 soldiers of the 17th Army Brigade and Nigerian Air Force 213 Operational Base said he was disturbed that bandits not only kill, but also maim and extort their victims.
Speaking at the Musa Yar’Adua Airport, Katsina, Buhari told the men working under the code name, “Operation Hadarin Daji,” to live up to the primary reason the operation was set up. He said, “This group was formed by the military to secure this geopolitical zone (North-West) from the activities of bandits. Fundamentally, it is your responsibility to secure the country.
“As the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, I believe you are capable of doing it. I don’t think you should spare any bandit. Identify and eliminate them. Pursue them anywhere you can find them and eliminate them.
“Nigeria deserves peace. The rainy season is good and we are already achieving food security, but we need peace. The money saved from food importation will be used to purchase arms for operations.”
“We will give you all the right equipment so that you can deal with them with dispatch. I appreciate all your efforts, but you can do more. I don’t want any bandit spared,”
A statement by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr Garba Shehu, also quoted Buhari as telling the troops that the longer they delayed in eliminating bandits, the longer they would stay on the battlefield.
After meeting the troops, the President, who was in company with the Katsina State Governor, Mr Aminu Masari, returned to Abuja.
The President had travelled out of Abuja to his home town, Daura, on August 8, to observe the Eid-el-Kabir holidays.