‘Bandit’ attacks kill 13 in northwest Nigeria

Kano, Nigeria, (20th March, 2021, 01:04 am) (AFP/APP):Gunmen from criminal gangs have killed 13 people and injured seven others in series of attacks in northwest Nigeria, in the latest violence plaguing the region, a local government official said on Friday.
Nigeria’s northwest and central states have been hit by a wave of mass abductions and gun attacks by criminal gangs who burn and ransack villages and target schools for kidnappings for ransom.
“Thirteen people have been killed and seven others injured, in a series of attacks across communities in Zangon Kataf, Kauru and Chikun local government areas,” Samuel Aruwan, Kaduna state home affairs commissioner said in a statement.
In the worst attack, 10 people were killed and four injured when bandits stormed Kizachi village in Kauru district in Kaduna, where they burnt “56 homes, 16 motorcycles and several barns”.
In three separate attacks three people were killed and three others injured in Gora Gan, Masaka and Zakka Pada villages, Aruwan said.
The heavily-armed gangs in northwest and central states have stepped up attacks in recent years, though they are driven mostly by financial gain.
The surge is another security challenge for the armed forces of President Muhammadu Buhari, who are also battling a decade-long jihadist insurgency in Nigeria’s northeast.
The criminal gangs, known locally as bandits, have recently turned their focus to schools where they kidnap students or schoolchildren for ransom.
Victims are mostly released a short time after negotiations with government officials though they deny any ransom payments.
Last week the gangs kidnapped 39 students from a forestry college at the outskirts of Kaduna city, the fourth such attack on a school since December.

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