Suspected terrorists abducted an unspecified number of traders travelling along the Kaduna- Birnin Gwari Road
A graphical illustration of gunmen.
Armed bandits have killed a mobile policeman attached to the Maru Police Division in an attack on the Ruwandoruwa community of Maru Local Government Area in Zamfara state
The bandits also reportedly abducted 15 persons including the wife of the district head of the community
Although the police authorities in the state are yet to comment on the latest attack, a resident of the community Abdullahi Ruwandoruwa told Channels Television in a phone conversation that the assault happened early around 12:30 am on Sunday.
He said the assailants unleashed gunfire indiscriminately after they stormed the community. According to him, a mobile policeman was fatally shot in front of the district head’s residence while attempting to defend the house.
While the bandits initially planned to kidnap the district head, they could not locate him, he added. Consequently, they seized the district head’s wife.
“They found their way to the district head’s house after which they shot a policeman in front of the house,” he said.
“They did not meet the district head at home, but they found his wife and took her away.”
Ruwandoruwa said the bandits are yet to contact the community for ransom regarding the abducted individuals.
Efforts to reach the police spokesperson in the state ASP Yazid Abubakar were not successful as his number was not reachable.
Zamfara is one of several states in northwestern and central Nigeria terrorised by criminal gangs, locally known as bandits, who raid villages, kill and abduct residents as well as burn homes after looting them.
The gangs, who maintain camps in huge forests straddling Zamfara, Katsina, Kaduna, and Niger states, have also been notorious for mass kidnappings of students from schools in recent years.
Violence in North-West Nigeria has its roots in the conflict between nomadic herders and settled farmers over land and resources, but it has spiralled into wider criminality.
Settlements form self-defence vigilante groups to protect villages and gangs carry out tit-for-tat reprisals on rival communities, often including mass abductions for ransom or leverage.
By Adeniyi Salaudeen
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