Nigerian Soldier Leaks Shoot-At-Sight Order, Buhari Begs Bandits, APC Governor Says Herdsmen Madness Must Stop

Nigerian Soldier Leaks Shoot-At-Sight Order, Advises Orlu Residents To Relocate

yet-to-be-identified Nigerian Army soldier has warned residents of Orlu town in Imo State to either relocate or be vigilant as some personnel had allegedly been given a shoot-at-sight order in the ongoing battle with the Eastern Security Network operatives.

The soldier, who spoke pidgin English in an audio obtained by SaharaReporters, added that he would not carry out the plan, and therefore, he had been allegedly marked by the army commander to be arrested and possibly killed.

Orlu has been a battleground of recent between the army and ESN operatives, with the military saying on Friday that it killed 11 ESN and IPOB operatives in a gun duel.

The soldier, who is attached to the 302 Artillery Regiment, Onitsha, Anambra State, warned residents of the town to relocate based on their commander’s alleged order.

In the audio obtained by SaharaReporters, the soldier said, “They first carried us (deployed us) to Maiduguri (Borno State). Then, 25 of us came back hoping that the matter was ended. Then they carried us to 302 Artillery, Onitsha. All of us were inside the barracks in Onitsha till 12pm this afternoon.

“When the fight ended in Orlu, the commander now said anybody we see, we should fire them.

“I beg you, because of God, if your person is in Orlu, from now till Monday, try to inform them. Tell them to change the location for now. Immediately I left the barracks, the commander said I was going out to expose them and make sure they get me and kill me.

“See the cloth that I am putting on. I didn’t buy these clothes with my money, if you follow this line, I was given this cloth and I have kept my uniform.”

ACF Kicks Against Payment Of Ransom To Bandits, Demands Negotiation

The Arewa Consultative Forum has stated that it is regrettable that millions of naira are paid to bandits for the recently released abducted students of the Federal College of Forestry Mechanisation, Afaka, Kaduna State.

The ACF said in a release that it kicked against the payment of ransoms to the bandits, saying the government must toe the line of negotiations.

The ACF National Publicity Secretary, Emmanuel Yawe, said, “The Arewa Consultative Forum, ACF, wishes to rejoice over the freedom re-gained by students of the Federal College of Forestry Mechanisation in Kaduna. The students have been held hostage by bandits who stormed the school on March 11 and took 39 of them, demanding vast amounts of money before their release.

“Ten of them had been released before now. Last week we heard that the previous batch of the hostages were all released. We thank God for saving their lives and rejoice with their families, both immediate and remote.

“We are grateful to the Nigerians who risked their lives in the delicate negotiating process to free the abducted students. Our only regret is that millions of Naira are alleged to have been paid to the bandits before they granted freedom to the kidnapped students.

“The ACF is against the payment of such ransom even though we agree with negotiating with bandits. We appeal to those bandits holding other students at Greenfield University àlso to set them free without further delay.”

THEN AND NOW: How FG went from threatening to ‘crush’ bandits to begging them

In recent months, bandits have initiated a series of attacks and kidnappings in various states, making governance difficult for those in power and heightening the degree of insecurity in the country.

Students of secondary and tertiary levels of education have become the major victims of these acts of banditry.

Some of the schools which have witnessed attacks in the past few months include Government Science College, Kagara in Niger; Government Girls Secondary School, Jangebe in Zamfara; Federal College of Forestry Mechanisation and Greenfield University, both in Kaduna; and recently, Abia State University.

Only three months ago, the presidency was threatening to crush the bandits behind the attacks and their sponsors, saying they can be defeated by the country’s security outfits — but in recent days, that hard stance appears to have softened.

TheCable chronicles how the presidency went from issuing threats to appealing to the better nature of bandits.

FEBRUARY 25: BUHARI SAYS BANDITS WILL BE DEALT WITH

In his address at the joint security meeting of the Northern State Governors’ Forum and traditional rulers on February 25, Buhari warned that his administration will deal with bandits.

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The president said he had directed service chiefs “to devise new strategies that will end this ugly situation where the lives of our people continue to be threatened by hoodlums and criminals”.

“The government shall continue to deal with insurgents, bandits, kidnappers and other criminals who constitute a threat to innocent citizens across the country,” he said.

“Criminals are criminals and should be dealt with accordingly, without resorting to ethnic profiling.”

FEBRUARY 26: BUHARI SAYS BANDITS AREN’T TOO STRONG TO BE DEFEATED

A day after the security meeting, Buhari warned that bandits are not too strong to be defeated.

The president made the remark following the abduction of schoolgirls from GGSS Jangebe.

“Let them (bandits) not entertain any illusions that they are more powerful than the government. They shouldn’t mistake our restraint for the humanitarian goals of protecting innocent lives as a weakness or a sign of fear or irresolution,” the president said.

MARCH 30: BUHARI ORDERS SERVICE CHIEFS TO TAKE OUT BANDITS, THEIR SPONSORS

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In March, Buhari, as quoted by Babagana Monguno, the national security adviser (NSA), called for a proactive approach in dealing with bandits.

The president directed service chiefs to take out bandits and their sponsors to boost the confidence of the people.

“Mr president has made it very clear to both the intelligence and operational elements that the first assignment will be to identify the leaders of these bandits, kidnappers and take them out, in order to restore confidence in those areas,” Monguno said.

“Mr president has said that he will no longer tolerate a situation whereby bandits and kidnappers are the ones dictating the pace and setting the tone and he will not also condone a situation in which our own operations are reactionary rather than being proactive.”

APRIL 23: BUHARI SAYS FG HAS CAPACITY TO CRUSH BANDITS

On April 22, TheCable reported that more than 25 people were killed in attacks on Gobirawa, Rini, Gora, and Madoti Dankule in Bakura and Maradun LGAs in Zamfara state.

Reacting to the incident, Garba Shehu, presidential spokesman, quoted Buhari as saying that his administration has the capacity to crush bandits.

Buhari said the Nigerian military possess “massive firepower” to take down bandits and burn down their camps.

“These criminals should stop pushing their luck too far by believing that the government lacks the capacity to crush them,” the president said.

“Let’s not give these criminals any opportunity to succeed by taking the war to their own camps and stop them in their tracks before they even have the time to respond under our massive firepower.”

MAY 5: BUHARI SHIFTS FROM THREATS TO APPEAL

Following the release of 27 students abducted from the Federal College of Forestry Mechanisation, Afaka, the president appealed to bandits to ensure the release of other kidnapped students.

The students gained their freedom on Thursday, over one month after they were abducted.

The presidential spokesman, in a statement, said: “The President appeals for the release of the students of the Greenfield University and all other citizens held in captivity, expressing the strong determination of his administration to ensure that Nigerians lived in a country where everyone can move where they want, when they want without the fear of kidnapping and banditry.”

What necessitated the softened tone and “appeal” to criminals is a question that has left many Nigerians scratching their heads.

Herdsmen killings: This madness in Nigeria must stop – Umahi

The Governor of Ebonyi State, David Umahi, has said that any herdsman coming to the South-East must conform to the culture of the people in the region.

Umahi, who is also the Chairman of the South-East Governors’ Forum, said herdsmen must stop any further killings of the innocent people of the zone.

He made this known at the weekend while addressing a mammoth crowd of believers, stakeholders and political leaders of the state during the ground finale of the 7 days praying and fasting organized by the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, Ebonyi State chapter, which took place at the ecumenical centre Abakaliki.

DAILY POST gathered that the seven days praying and fasting organized by CAN was aimed at seeking Gods intervention on the increasing insecurity in Nigeria, in particular Ebonyi state, where lots of police stations razed, officers killed by unknown gunmen.

Umahi further warned that on no account should herdsmen attempt to kill people in the South-East zone, especially in Ebonyi, where some communities were recently attacked by herders killing 15 people.

According to Umahi: “Those people you think are your friends will become your enemies. No place will be safe. We are at war with ourselves. No herdsmen in the South East will make any attempt to kill anybody again.

“Nobody. Every herdsman coming to the South-East must to the culture of the people. Our people everywhere in South-South, South-West and in the north must conform to the culture of the people.

“Some herdsmen threatened that they would come and do this and do that, I said the last killing is the one that happened in the past. No time again will Ebonyi man or woman be killed. Never again. People have the effrontery to say herdsmen are coming to kill people. Let them try it again. That rubbish must stop.

“This madness in this country must stop. I see videos of Boko Haram ravaging places in the north unchecked. Where is our air fighting powers? We must not be ashamed to borrow fighter jets from other African countries. No nation will allow this kind of thing to be happening,” he stated.

Earlier in a remark, the Chairman of CAN Ebonyi State chapter, Rev. Fr. Abraham Nwali, charged the state’s citizens to give way for peace to reign in the state and shun all forms of violence in the state.

He warned people who are in the habit of sponsoring youths to go into war, desist or face God’s wrath.

Look For Shawwal Moon Tuesday, Islamic Council Tells MuslimsLook For Shawwal Moon Tuesday, Islamic Council Tells Muslims

The Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), under the leadership of its President-General and Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar III, has urged Muslims across the country to look for the new moon of Shawwal on Tuesday.

Aguero missed embarrassingly from penalty spot

Sergio Aguero had the chance to put Manchester City 2-0 up over Chelsea from the penalty spot but missed embarrassingly.

Aguero were already 1-0 up through Raheem Sterling when they were awarded a spot-kick shortly before half-time.

The Blues striker stepped up to take it knowing that converting it would put his side within touching distance of clinching the Premier League title.

But his weak attempt at a Panenka-style penalty dropped into the hands of grateful Chelsea goalkeeper Edouard Mendy.

Aguero immediately sheepishly looked over to the bench, where manager Pep Guardiola was visibly annoyed.