Negotiations are ongoing with a son of a slain bandits’ leader, Buharin Daji, and top leader bandits in Zamfara forest and they will soon lay down their arms, Zamfara State Governor Bello Matawalle has said.
The governor said this when he received a Kaduna-based Islamic cleric, Sheikh Ahmed Gumi, at the Government House, Gusau.
Gumi has earlier met with bandits’ leaders to persuade them to embrace peace.
Matawalle said the bandit’s decision to lay down his arms would be a turning point in the quest to bring back peace to the state, adding that he never regretted having a dialogue with the armed men in the state.
“If I had not had enough courage, I could have abandoned the peace deal with armed men because of the pressure being mounted on me by those who think there should not be such initiatives,” he said
“I’m being blackmailed from different quarters for having a dialogue with the armed bandits. Some said I’m with them, others said I harbour them. We have seen the positive impacts of this deal. We have rescued dozens of kidnapped victims without firing a single shot.
“If we know that force can stop the attacks, we won’t bother to have a dialogue with the armed men.”