In a distressing turn of events, no fewer than 15 communities in the Garba-Chede area of Bali Local Government Area in Taraba State have fallen victim to a wave of heavily armed bandit attacks. The situation has forced residents to flee their homes, seeking refuge in the Kaigama chiefdom in Garba-Chede.
The bandits, armed to the teeth, have unleashed terror on the communities, kidnapping innocent individuals, including women and children. The victims are reportedly taken to remote mountaintops, where negotiations for ransom take place. Muhammad Gamfuru, the monarch of Gamfurum, one of the affected communities, revealed that the bandits have targeted him and his family, leaving them with no choice but to relocate to ensure their safety.
“The bandits are numerous, each carrying multiple AK-47 guns,” said Gamfuru, expressing his deep concern over the dire situation. The monarch further highlighted that the bandits force their victims to carry their belongings when they move their base to different locations. Shockingly, over 100 individuals, including approximately 20 women and children, have been abducted so far.
Gamfuru pleaded with the authorities to take immediate action to flush out the bandits and restore peace to the affected communities. He recounted the recent release of six kidnapped victims, who were only set free after paying a hefty ransom of N7 million.
The Taraba State Police Command’s Public Relations Officer, Abdullahi Usman, assured the public that the command is fully aware of the situation and has taken decisive steps to address it. Usman revealed that a joint patrol team, consisting of soldiers, hunters, and vigilantes, has been established to combat the banditry. Additionally, police personnel were deployed on Friday, with further reinforcements scheduled to arrive in the troubled areas on Monday.
Investigations have revealed that the bandits wreaking havoc in Taraba State are the same criminals who fled Zamfara, Katsina, Kebbi, and Sokoto in the North-West region of the country. Their migration has brought a wave of violence and insecurity to the peaceful communities of Taraba State.
The rampant banditry in Taraba State is a cause for great concern, not only for the affected residents but also for the entire country. It underscores the urgent need for comprehensive security measures to be put in place to combat this growing menace. The safety and well-being of innocent civilians must be prioritized, and the authorities must act swiftly to restore peace and stability to the affected communities.
The plight of the kidnapped victims and their families cannot be ignored. Their lives have been shattered, and they endure unimaginable trauma while awaiting their release. It is crucial for the government and security agencies to collaborate effectively, pooling their resources and expertise to secure the safe return of these innocent individuals.
The people of Taraba State, along with concerned citizens across the nation, eagerly await positive developments in the fight against banditry. The joint patrol team’s efforts, coupled with increased police presence, offer hope for a brighter future. It is imperative that these measures yield tangible results, bringing an end to the reign of terror inflicted by these heavily armed criminals.
As the communities in Garba-Chede and surrounding areas strive to rebuild their lives, it is essential for the nation to stand united against the forces of lawlessness and terror. The resilience and determination of the affected residents, combined with the unwavering commitment of the authorities, will ultimately triumph over the menace of banditry, restoring peace and security to Taraba State once more.