The Niger State Governor, Abubakar Bello has disclosed how some repentant bandits deceived the government into collecting money to buy more weapons for their operations.
He made the disclosure at a parley with a vigilante group at Mariga Local Government Area of the State, yesterday.
The Governor, however, assured that bandits who give up their old ways, would be offered a means of livelihood without financial backing.
According to Bello: “I am here to thank the vigilantes, boost their morale and to offer more support from the state government so that they can continue to support the police and other security agencies in the fight against bandits and other criminal elements.
“Any bandit that surrenders his weapons and repents from his heinous way of living would be forgiven, and provided with a means of livelihood which would not necessarily include any cash backing.
“From experience, it has been discovered that the repentant bandits, after collecting cash from the dialogue option, they will purchase more weapons and return to their old ways of banditry.”
Niger State is one of the Northern states being terrorized by bandits.
Just three days ago, armed bandits had abducted about 49 people in Rafi and Wushishi Local Governments Areas of the state.
The bandits were said to have invaded the area on motorcycles and parked far away from the village, while they walked to the village to attack residents who were fast asleep.