President Muhammadu Buhari has directed security agencies to shoot anyone seen with AK-47 rifles.
This includes Fulani herdsmen whom Bauchi governor Bala Mohammed defended for carrying the lethal weapon for “self-defence”.
Buhari, however, did not issue the order openly. Presidential spokesperson, Garba Shehu, disclosed this in an interview with the BBC. Shehu had also disclosed during a TV appearance that Buhari ordered police to arrest Yoruba crusader Sunday Igboho. But that “order” is yet to materialise.
On the possession of AK-47 rifles, Shehu said President Buhari directed a clampdown on bandits who have refused to surrender.
On the efforts being made to rid Zamfara and other northern states of bandits, Shehu said the government is resorting to lethal force.
“The president has ordered security forces to go into the bushes and shoot whoever they see with sophisticated weapons like AK-47 rifles,” Shehu said.
“He ordered that whoever is seen with terrible weapons at all should be shot immediately.”
Shehu also said the Nigerian government declared Zamfara a no-fly zone following intelligence that arms were being transported to the bandits with private jets.
“These jets are being used to pick up gold that is being mined in some parts of Zamfara and exported. This is strong because at the moment, there is a Nigerian gold market in Dubai.
“The government is losing, the people of this country are losing, that’s why it is said that gold mining is banned for those who are not made by the government,” he said.