Boom all Forests in North to Flush out Bandits, Don't Mind Collateral Damage – El-Rufai


Alt: = ”Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, Kaduna State Governor"

Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State has suggested for a colossal bombing of all the forests in the North to flush out bandits, without minding “collateral damage” damage that will definitely occur.

“I’ve always believed that, you know, we should carpet-bomb the forests; we can replant the trees after,” Mr El-Rufai said in an interview with Arise TV on Monday. 

“Let’s carpet-bomb the forests and bomb all of them. There will be collateral damage, but it’s better to wipe them out and get people back to our communities so that agriculture and rural economics can pick up.” 

Mallam El-Rufai has always proposed ruthless tactics in dealing with insecurity in the North, especially banditry. He had once claimed to have written to President Muhammadu Buhari, requesting that bandits be declared terrorists so Nigerian military can deal with them without recourse to human rights abuses. 

In November 2021, the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court declared them terrorists, but the Office of the Attorney General and Minister Justice is yet to designate bandits terrorists and publish same in the official gazette as the court ordered.

This time El-Rufai statement appears too extreme as collateral damage refers to civilian casualties in military operations, implying that  the Governor was asking the military to not consider the loss lives of innocent Nigerian in ridding off bandits from northern forests.

Mr El-Rufai noted that Nigerian security agencies have been overstretched due to various security challenges in the country.

“These bandits operate in the periphery because their hiding place is in the forest. It’s a major problem. The security agencies are doing their best but they are overstretched,” the governor said. 

“The reality is we don’t have enough boots on the ground to address the myriad of security challenges that we face, and these security challenges are asymmetric, widespread, and there’s no part of Nigeria that doesn’t have one security problem or the other,” he added. 

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