Minister of Information and National Orientation, Alhaji Mohammed Idris, on Monday in Abuja, admonished Zamfara against politicising efforts by the Federal Government to end insecurity.
NewsWireNGR had earlier reported that the Zamfara government accused the Federal Government (FG) of sending a delegation to meet with bandit groups in the state secretly.
Reacting, Idris said; “Zamfara government is supposed to appreciate security agents and Federal Government institutions for the prompt effort to rescue abducted students of the Federal University, Gusau.
“Instead, the Zamfara government chose to play politics with the sensitive matter for cheap political goals.
“Federal Government institutions are empowered by law to spring to action with or without prompting to ensure safe return of citizens illegally taken hostage, like in the case of these hapless students.
“The fact that details of such delicate operations are not revealed by the institutions responsible does not make it in any way surreptitious, as the Zamfara government atrociously described the effort.
“For the avoidance of doubt, no official of the Federal Government is engaged in negotiation with any bandit or group of bandits.
“Government maintains its resolve to explore every available avenue that can lead to the de-escalation of tension and bring back peace to communities ravaged by banditry,’’ the minister said.
His views were conveyed in a statement issued by the Deputy Director of Press in the ministry, Mr Suleiman Haruna.
According to the minister, the Federal Government will support people-driven initiatives where communities borrow a leaf from what has helped to end unrest in other parts of the country and engage in dialogue.
He assured that the Federal Government and its institutions were working assiduously to turn the current insecurity situation around and bring an end to ebbing cases of banditry, kidnapping and all forms of criminality.
“Political differences or personal fight with anybody should not be brought into a serious matter of national security to avoid demoralising our troops or derailing government’s efforts.
“The Federal Government is willing to listen and to continue its on-going engagement with all stakeholders in working out a lasting solution to the country’s security challenges.
“We urge everyone to put hands on deck with us,’’ Idris stressed.
Bandits stormed off-campus residences of the Federal University, Gusau on Thursday and abducted some of the students.