THE Federal government of Nigeria has declared Zamfara a ‘no-fly zone,’ placing a ban on mining activities in the state.
Babagana Monguno, national security adviser, disclosed this on Tuesday during a briefing with State House correspondents at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.
According to Monguno, President Muhammadu Buhari had approved the declaration of Zamfara State a ‘no-fly zone’ and had also sanctioned the recommendation that mining activities be banned in the state with immediate effect.
“The president has approved, based on our recommendations, the imposition and enforcement of a ban on all mining activities in Zamfara with immediate effect until further notice.
Read Also: Zamfara: Treat abductions of students as a breach of UN charter, SERAP urges UN Security Council
“He has also approved that Zamfara State should be declared ‘a no-fly zone’ with immediate effect,” Monguno said.
The NSA further said that Buhari had also given an order to deploy ‘massive military and intelligence assets’ to restore peace in the region.
Mungonu noted that Buhari had directed security officials to clamp down on all those behind the security challenges being witnessed in the state and across the country.
The crisis facing Zamfara State
Zamfara State is one of the major northern states ravaged by banditry, terrorism and other illegalities.
According to Abutu Yaro, state commissioner of police, some communities in the state including Munya, Shiroro, Mariga and the Lapai-Agaie axis had been taken over by bandits.
A few days ago, some bandits operating in the state abducted over 300 schoolchildren in Janzebe Local Government. Although some schoolchildren have been released, there is still an atmosphere of insecurity in the state.
There are also reports of an established nexus between banditry and the illegal miners operating in the state. The illegal miners have been long accused of informing bandits of the whereabouts of military personnel in the state.