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Opinion: The Death of Alhaji Ishe, And The Birth of Banditry In Nigeria's Northwest Region

Recently, the activities of bandits operating in the Northern region of Nigeria, have become a nightmare to millions of Nigerians. Despite the efforts being made by the government and security agencies, the bandits have continued to successfully carry out various degrees of attacks and killings in different parts of the region. Between January and September 2021, the bandits have been responsible for the deaths and kidnappings of several people in the region, including school children.

Image Credit: Google

There is no doubt that insecurity has remained one of the permanent features of every society in the world. However, one may not be wrong to say that the level and the trend of the insecurity caused by the activities of bandits in the Northern region, is totally different from what it used to be in the past. Arguably, the Northern region was relatively peaceful before the bandits began to carry out their criminal activities in the region. With the emergence of banditry, the Northern region has become one of the most unsafe places in the country.

Bandits Leader, Samaila - Image Credit: Social Media

The level of attacks and killings in the Northwest and North-central by the armed bandits have undoubtedly led many people to trace what could have given birth to the ugly development in the region. In the course of tracing the origin of banditry in the North, a report has emerged, revealing how the death of a Fulani man identified as Alhaji Ishe, gave birth to what is today known as bandits and banditry in the country. It should be recalled that in 2019, the Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle, setup a Committee to look into the issues of banditry in the state.

Image Credit: Social Media

As obtained from the Vanguard News, about 19 years ago, the Committee has released a report, revealing how the District Head of Dansadu, Alhaji Shafiu Salihu, and the Emir of Birnin Gwari, ordered the Yan Sakai Vigilante group, to kill anyone that stole anything in the area. This resulted in the group taking laws into their own hands. It was gathered that at one point, people were ordered to dig their own graves before they were eventually killed. In another incident, a man who was discharged and acquitted by the court was killed alongside his father by the Yan Sakai on getting home.

Image Credit: Google

This aggrieved a Fulani man identified as Alhaji Ishe, prompting him to champion the course of Fulani people in the area. With this, the man became the leader of Fulani people in the area. Abut 6 years later, the Yan Sakai became aggressive, and Alhaji Ishe was eventually killed by putting him inside his car and burn him to ashes. The death of Alhaji Ishe, was followed by a statement by one of his relatives who alleged that his life was worth about 1000 Hausa people. This can be argued to be the point where bandits and banditry were born in Zamfara in the Northwest, before eventually spreading to other states in the North.

Image Credit: Google

As obtained from the report, the death of Alhaji Ishe, who had assumed the leadership of Fulani people, and indiscriminate killings of Fulani people by the Yan Sakai, sparked off reprisal attacks and killings of Hausa people by the Fulani, with those in rural areas being mostly targeted. Today, the attacks and killings which started like group rivalry, have metamorphosed into criminal gangs that attack and kill people irrespective of the group they belong to.

Image Credit: Google

With the Panel of investigation having identified some of the issues that can be argued to have birthed banditry in Zamfara, and the common belief that bandits started from the state before spreading to others, we can only pray and hope that solution is proffered in the coming days.

Content created and supplied by: Homopoliticus_Bosco (via Opera News )

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