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We May Not Rule Out Dialogue, Amnesty For Bandits – Nigeria Police Boss

Mohammed Abubakar Adamu

The Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Adamu has said that the issue of dialogue and amnesty for the bandits and cattle rustlers operating in parts of the North cannot be ruled out.

“When we are talking about peace initiative, there are a lot of things that we take into consideration. You give out something to get something. And this peace initiative has not started with the bandits in the North Western part of this country. If you remember, some years back, we were having issues in the Niger Delta and those issues kinetic actions could not solve the problem until amnesty and peace initiative came up and what we had had in Niger Delta had gone.

“So, I think part of strategy to deal with challenges in terms of either security or war, there is peaceful negotiation too. So it is not that you are a bandit and on the course of the banditry you committed crime you must be punished when there is peace initiative going on. If you refuse to accept the peace initiative of course you have to face the consequences.”

The Inspector General of Police spoke to news men today, September 19 after a security meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

He said that as part of the peace initiative and the dialogues had been organized security summit at the Northwestern zone where his officers sat with the traditional rulers and all the governors and the leadership of Miyetti Allah to identify some of the challenges that are fuelling kidnapping and banditry.

“Those challenges were looked into to the extent that the bandits and kidnappers have decided to release their captives and surrender their arms.  That has contributed and also those that have refused to accept the peace initiative, we have been able to identify their camps, especially on Abuja Kaduna road and along Birnin Gwari, Niger State axis and we went to the camps of these kidnappers and we dislodged some of the camps. In fact, in the security briefing, we gave specific numbers of the camps that we have destroyed and the casualties the bandits recorded as a result of that. So that has also made them to surrender and some of them relocated and we are following those that have relocated to know the new location and also engage them.”

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Mohammed Adamu said that recently, there have been series of peace initiatives, especially the Tiv/Jukun crisis, adding that the federal government came up with initiatives by bringing the leadership of the two states and their traditional rulers.

“We have been asked to support that initiative and see to it that dialogue succeeds and that there is peace between the Jukun and Tivs.”

He said that President Buhari insisted that the security people bring about zero crime society in the whole of the country, adding that he also charged them to do more than what they have been doing across the country.

“We have also been charged to increase security along the pipelines to make sure that crude oil theft is stopped completely because the loss that the country is facing in that area is not tolerated. “So, we have changed to increase our security activities in that direction to make sure that crude oil theft is stopped completely.