Zamfara Communities Forced to Pay N9 Million to Bandits to Avoid Attacks

By: / September 20th, 2023 / 6 views

Zamfara Communities Forced to Pay N9 Million to Bandits to Avoid Attacks

Zamfara Communities Forced to Pay N9 Million to Bandits to Avoid Attacks

In order to prevent attacks by the group harassing the villages, bandits are reportedly demanding N3 million (approximately $ 3,000 USD) from each of the three communities in Shinkafi Local Government Area of Zamfara State, Northwest Nigeria.

According to reports, the charge is a penalty assessed on the villages for inhabitants of Kamarawa, Sabuwar Kamarawa, and Gebe giving security personnel with information that resulted in the arrest of Dan Bokolo’s brother, Abdullahi.

The state governor, Dauda Lawal, claimed that the state administration would not hold talks with terrorists, therefore paying the protection charge goes against his position.

An unnamed resident claimed that Dan Bokolo’s accusations that members of the communities had betrayed his brother caused tension in the area after Abdullahi’s incarceration.

Community elders talked to the terrorists in an effort to mediate a settlement. Dan Bokolo eventually consented to take a figure of N3 million as compensation for the alleged treachery, down from his initial demand of N6 million.

“That was the beginning of our troubles. “Dan Bokolo was angry because he was told that it was people from any of these three communities that gave information that led to the arrest of his brother,” a resident told PREMIUM TIMES.

When local elders decided to approach the terrorist for a peace settlement, he was preparing to launch an attack against the community.

“Our elders were able to convince some Fulani elders that Abdullahi was arrested by the security agents and it was not anyone from our community that gave out the information. He (Dan Bokolo) was convinced that our people didn’t “betray” his brother but he still said we must buy peace from him.

The terrorist Dan Bokolo eventually agreed that the three communities would have to pay a fee of N3 million for tipping off his brother. Initially, he had requested N6 million.

Payment of protection levies has, according to human rights and peace campaigner Basharu Guyawa, been standard practice in eastern Sokoto and Zamfara.

He claimed to have spoken to a number of Kamarawa people, all of whom informed him that the localities had raised the funds the militants had sought.

“Bello Turji [another notorious terrorist] had to intervene for Dan Bokolo to even listen to the people of the communities. The problem is how sure are we that he is going to keep to his promise not to attack the area?” Mr Guyawa said.

Mustapha Jafaru, the senior special assistant to the governor of Zamfara for broadcast and public affairs, said that the state government was not informed of the deal and was not a party to it.

“We’ve always maintained that we’ll not dialogue with terrorists in Zamfara State. Dauda (the governor) has always said that he would not negotiate with them because they’re criminals. So if the communities are discussing with bandits, we don’t have anything to do with that arrangement and we’re not part of it because that’s not our style.


“Ever since we came onboard, we’ve been trying to curtail the activities of these terrorists through different ways but dialogue is not one of the ways we’re following. We’ll continue to protect the people of Zamfara State as we’ve been doing,” Mr Jafaru said.