Kaduna State Governor, Malam Nasir El-Rufai, has said that bandits and kidnappers are attacking the state because of the government’s position not to negotiate with criminals.
El-Rufai, who spoke via Zoom on Channels TV programme Sunday Politics last night, said the state government would not change its stand on the issue, arguing that it was uncivilised to negotiate with criminals.
He described those who consider the option of negotiating with bandits as irrational and emotional.
He said: “I think that the bandits and their leaders decided to collectively target Kaduna state because of the position we have taken that we will not negotiate with them, that we will not give them a penny of taxpayers’ money.
“And whoever comes to Kaduna for the purpose of banditry or kidnapping is most likely going to end up dead.
“We believe that the solution to this problem is to intensify military operations from the air or the ground and wipe all of them out. We do not think any bandit deserves to live.”
The governor said the only option in a civilised society to deal with criminals was to apply the full weight of the law.
“There is no civilised society that can sit back when its sovereignty is challenged, when its monopoly of coercive power is challenged. The first thing to do is to wipe these bandits out. This is war, we must fight them to the end. We must wipe them out. That is the first order of business.
“When you wipe out 95 percent of them and if five percent are ready to repent and go back to normal civilian life, then we can talk but you don’t talk to criminals the moment they start. There is no other option. There is no society that sits and negotiates with criminals, nowhere in the world. You are empowering them, you are emboldening them,” El-Rufai said.
On the abduction of 39 students from the Federal College of Forestry Mechanisation, Afaka in Kaduna on the 11th of March 2021, El-Rufai said the state government was using technology and coercive instruments to locate the kidnapped students and pursue the bandits.