Dozens of people including women and children are reportedly missing while houses, shops as well as private and public buildings have been burnt by the assailants.
Daily Trust reports that the communities are in Magami District of Gusau Local Government Area.
These are: ‘Yar Doka, Kango, Ruwan Dawa, Madaba, Arzikin Da and Mairairai. Residents said armed men first laid siege on ‘Yar Doka village on motorbikes and short any one at sight. The village is about 7 km west of Magami town.
“The whereabouts of dozens of residents who escaped the siege is still unknown,” one of the traumatized residents, said.
It was learnt that from ‘Yar Doka, the attackers proceeded to another village called Kango and shot dead at least 11 people. A resident, Halliru Bala, said the armed men also killed thirteen people in Ruwan Dawa community along Gusau – Dansadau road. The village is 58 km south of Gusau, the state capital.
“They also shot dead seven people at Madaba, two at Mairairai and five people at Arzikin Da communities.
“As I am talking to you, the seven bodies of the slain residents had already been brought to Magami town and they would be buried this evening immediately after Iftar,” he said. Bala said most those killed were the people who had gone to offer help to the communities under attack.
“You know, people in rural communities hardly look the other way when ever their neighbours are under attack,” he said.
Our correspondent reports that residents of ‘Yar Doka community had deserted their homes after a deadly attack by the armed men some months ago but were assaulted again just a day after they returned.
Another resident who gave his name as Babangida, said: “The bandits attacked the community and burnt their food stores. The residents had to take shelter in Magami. They decided to return but unknown to them, the armed criminals were planning to attack them again.
“The assailants moved from one village to another. I saw injured residents being conveyed to a medical facility. The vigilantes known as ‘Yan Sakai had gone to Yar Doka community to repel the attack but were forced to return by the superior firepower of the attackers,” he said.
When contacted, the spokesman of Zamfara State Police Command, SP Muhammad Shehu, said: “Give me time, I will get back to you.”
He did not respond up till the time of filing this report. Also, repeated calls to Zamfara Commissioner for Security and Home Affairs, Abubakar Dauran, did not respond to repeated calls last night.
However, in a statement last night, the state Commissioner for Information, Ibrahim Dosara only spoke on separate attacks launched by bandits on Tuesday.
“Following simultaneous attacks by recalcitrant bandits on Gobirawa, Gora, Rini and Madoti Dankule villages of Maradun and Bakura Local Government Areas of the State on Tuesday 20th April, 2021 leading to the loss of lives of innocent members of the above mentioned communities, the state government under the leadership of His Excellency, Governor Bello Mohammed Matawallen Maradun is saddened by this unfortunate incident and condemned it in strongest terms.
“The government also condoled with the families of those who lost their lives in the sad event and is taking every necessary steps to ensure that the culprits are brought to book.
“As part of the government concern and care about the lives and welfare of the people, it constituted a high powered delegation under the leadership of the Speaker, Zamfara State House of Assembly, Nasiru Mu’azu Magarya to visit the affected communities to pay the state government’s condolences and sympathize with the families of the deceased,” the statement said.
Zamfara has been in the news for long because of constant attacks by bandits occasioned by the killing of people especially in the rural communities.
The federal government recently declared Zamfara a no-fly zone, banned mining activities and reportedly deployed additional 6,000 troops to contain criminality in the state. However, many attacks have been launched since the declaration even as the Zamfara State governor, Bello Matawalle, maintained his stand on the need for dialogue with the bandits as a way resolving the protracted insecurity in the state.
Military camp attacked in Niger
A soldier was declared missing after armed bandits stormed a military camp in Zazzaga community in Munya Local Government Area of Niger State in the early hours of yesterday.
Daily Trust gathered that the bandits engaged soldiers on ground in a gun battle that lasted two hours.
A source said the bandits recorded heavy casualties but Daily Trust cannot independently verify this claim. The latest attack happened three weeks after bandits, in large numbers, attacked a Security Joint Task Force base in Allawa and Basa in Shiroro Local Government Area of Niger, killing five soldiers and a Mobile Policeman. Although, no soldier was killed in this latest attack, a soldier said to be the RSM of the camp, has been declared missing.
Daily Trust learnt that the bandits, who stormed Zagzaga community at about 4:00am, shared themselves into three groups.
While one group made their way straight to the Military Camp located at the Junior Secondary School, about 500 meters from the town, the second group laid ambush on the major road leading to the community.
The third group, according to our source, made their way to the community to prevent any reinforcements from the vigilantes and the youths. The source also said that after about two hours of gun exchange from 4:00am to 6:00am, the soldiers ran out of ammunition and made a retreat.
After the soldiers beat a retreat, the bandits stormed the camp, set military vehicles on fire and went away with another while they also burnt the food store in the camp.
“I think the bandits might have used the Military Vehicle to evacuate the injured ones and possibly some dead ones among them because the Soldiers really fought them until they ran out of ammunition.
“The bandits came around 4:00am and since that time, we were hearing gun shots till about 6:00am.”
The military camp in Zagzaga has been in existence since 2012 when the activities of the bandits took a different dimension with the killing of no fewer than 50 members of the community in one month.
2 officers killed as gunmen attack Enugu police station
Gunmen killed two policemen yesterday during an attack on Adani Police Station in Uzo-Uwani Local Government Area of Enugu State.
The spokesman of the state police command, Daniel Ndukwe, in a statement, said the station “was violently attacked and set ablaze at about 2.30am by yet-to -be identified gunmen”.
He said operatives, who were on duty during the attack, engaged the attackers in a gun battle.
He said some of the assailants escaped with gunshot injuries.
“Unfortunately, two policemen were critically wounded and later confirmed dead in the hospital,’’ Ndukwe said. He the Commissioner of Police in the state, Mohammed Aliyu, had ordered the deployment of operational and intelligence assets to fish out the assailants.
He said the commissioner gave the order during an on-the-spot assessment visit to the station, together with heads of other sister security agencies in the state.
Ndukwe said the commissioner had commiserated with families and relations of the deceased policemen.
“The command appeals to members of the public to assist it with timely and credible information that will aid the quick arrest of the assailants.
“Residents, especially owners of medical facilities, should promptly report to the police anyone suspected to have gunshot injuries,’’ he said.
From Shehu Umar (Gusau) & Romoke W. Ahmad, (Minna)