Zamfara govt back-door negotiation with bandit leader Turji yields result

January 4, 2022
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Notorious bandit leader Bello Turji released 52 persons who had been under his captivity for a long time. Not exactly out of kindness.

According to the Daily Trust, the release was part of a negotiation between Turji and the Zamfara government.

And it was another volte face because the state government had closed its door against negotiations before now.

The terrorist leader wrote a leter of truce to Zamfara government, Emir of Shinkafi, and President Muhammadu Buhari, saying he was ready to lay down his arms.

The victims released were locals Turji’s boys kidnapped months ago from Shinkafi, Sabon Birni and Isa local government areas in Zamfara and Sokoto states.

“Some of them had spent more than two months in captivity and some were freed after ransoms were paid by their families. Those whose families could not raise the huge ransoms demanded by the armed criminals remained in captivity up to this time when Almighty Allah came to their rescue,” a resident told the newspaper.

Some of the kidnapped were also kept in different camps while they were in captivity.

Residents spotted a convoy of vehicles conveying the released hostages to Gusau where they will be debriefed and then reunited with their families.

Apparently, the military onslaught on the bandits has made criminalities in the area more difficult for Turji and other bandits, and their options seem not many.

Sources said Turji has lot of many of his family members and kinsmen in the air raids and other attacks the federal troops launched recently. Some even think he might leave his domain very soon.

Turji might be sober now. But many call for caution in dealing with him.

A banditry historian at the Usmanu Danfodiyo University, Sokoto, Dr Murtala Ahmad Rufa’i called on government to be cautious as it engage Turji in dialogue, and asked for sincerity.

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