By John Ikani
Suspected armed bandits have attacked the Goronyo market in Goronyo Local Government Area in the Eastern Senatorial District of Sokoto State, killing an unspecified number of persons.
Sources in the village said the assailants attacked the market in large numbers on Sunday night, shooting sporadically and killing several persons.
Reacting to the attack on Monday, Governor Aminu Tambuwal said about 30 people were feared dead in Goronyo township, the headquarters of Goronyo local government area.
He disclosed this when the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Farouk Yahaya paid him a courtesy visit.
“Between last night, yesterday evening till this morning, we were greeted with a very dastardly attack in Goronyo local government, particularly Goronyo Township, where scores and tens have lost their lives and still counting. We’re not sure of the figure. But it is 30 something,” he said.
The governor noted that the army chief has “come at a very trying moment for the army and the Nigerian nation. We’re faced and bedevilled by many security challenges in our own area here, particularly banditry, kidnapping and other associated crimes.”
He called for synergy between the army and other security operatives in the state while requesting for the presence of more forces in the state and the deployment of more resources.
Tambuwal also pledged that his administration will continue to support the army and other security operatives.
What you should know:
The incident marks the third time in two weeks that the armed bandits attacked village markets in the state amid military operations in the area.
For several weeks, troops have been conducting air and ground operations on bandit camps in neighbouring Zamfara state where authorities have shut down telecom services to disrupt communication between the gangs.
Bandits fleeing the military operation in Zamfara have set up camps in the Sabon Birni district from where they raid villages.
Less than two weeks ago, no fewer than 20 persons were killed when the assailants attacked the Ungwan Lalle market in Sabon Birni Local Government Area of the state.
The influx of bandits from neighbouring Zamfara state prompted authorities in Sokoto to suspend weekly markets and shut down telecom towers in areas on the border with Zamfara, including Sabon Birni.
Last month, 17 Nigerian security personnel were killed when gunmen raided their base in Sabon Birni’s Dama village which the military blamed on Islamic State-aligned jihadists.