Attahiru Ahmad, emir of Anka and chairman of the Zamfara state council of chiefs, says President Muhammadu Buhari ought have sacked Mansur Dan-Ali, minister of defence.
Ahmad made the remark in response to the allegation of the minister that some monarchs were conspiring with bandits.
He reportedly described the minister’s allegation as serious, saying Dan-Ali, who hails from Birnin Magaji local government area of Zamfara, ought to have relocated to his local government as part of efforts to tackle banditry.
“It is very unfortunate for the defence minister to accuse us of aiding banditry. If it were in another country, the minister would have been fired because it is a very serious allegation,” he said.
“He said it was not only the traditional rulers in Zamfara that were aiding the bandits but even those in other parts of the north.
“But we kept quiet because he is our own. Go to his local government area and see what is happening. So, as a defence minister, he should have relocated there.”
He commended the federal government for deploying troops in the state to combat banditry.
“I have already explained that I have an able officer deployed in my domain. The only hindrance is that the troops deployed here are very few in number and have no required equipment to fight the bandits,” he said.
“Nevertheless, the leader of the team acts promptly and very fast whenever there is a problem.”
Ahmad also appealed to the federal government to act “as quickly as possible by coming to our rescue because if nothing is urgently done, there is going to be human tragedy in Zamfara.”
“These bandits will one day come to the major towns to attack people if they are not effectively controlled,” he said.
“With the number of the bandits and their sophisticated weapons, I think they can attack any local government headquarters. So, we are appealing for deployment of more soldiers.
“Because if you have money in Nigeria, you can get anything you want. So these bandits are very rich.
“For example, if they abduct a person, they will collect up to N5m ransom or even N10m and the money will be paid in a maximum of two weeks. So by the time they are collecting N5m from one person, others are also waiting to pay for the release of their brothers.”