Nasir el-Rufai, the governor of Kaduna State, has stated that the phrase “repentant bandits” is a misnomer and that it does not exist.
This is as he said that the goal of the Kaduna State Government is to kill bandits wherever they are found.
The governor disclosed this to State House Correspondents on Tuesday shortly after meeting with the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.
El-Rufai, who was in the Villa to brief the President on Sunday’s attack on Kauran Fawa, Marke and Ruhiya of Idasu Ward of Giwa Local Government Area, Kaduna State, which left at least 40 people dead, was accompanied by the State’s Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, Samuel Aruwan.
He said, “There is nothing like repentant terrorists. The only repentant bandit is the one that is dead. Our intention in the state is to kill them (terrorists), let them go and see God.
“If you want to call them terrorists, you can call them terrorists. But we don’t want them to be confused with the terrorists that we know: the Boko Haram and IPOB which have been declared terrorists.
“We don’t call them terrorists, we call them IPOB. Okay, so this is it. The nomenclature doesn’t matter. What matters is they is now a fair game for the armed forces.
“What I’m saying is, we call them bandits to differentiate them from the rest but they are terrorists. You can choose any name you want to give them but as a government, I have to call them by a name that everyone understands. They have been declared terrorists, but they have to have a name that everyone can understand and not confuse them with Boko Haram.”
He added that the locations of the bandits is not a mystery but that the military is only toeing the line of caution because of potential collateral damage an all-out raid could pose to innocent civilians.
According to him, terrorists are of three types; Boko Haram insurgents, bandits, and members of the Indigenous People of Biafra.
He said the recent declaration of bandits as terrorists has given the military more impetus to engage them in real warfare.
While calling on security agencies to be more aggressive towards terrorists, the former FCT minister also sought the intervention of the president for the deployment of more security personnel to the troubled region.