The Nigerian Army has organised a town Hall meeting in Kagara Community of Rafi Local Government Area of Niger State to create more effective and easier ways of combating kidnapping and banditry.
The meeting is part of its activities on the ongoing Operation Ayem Akparuma (The Cat Race) in the North-west and North Central Regions of Nigeria.
The Town Hall meeting held at the Emir of Kagara’s Palace on Wednesday, was spearheaded by the “31 Artillery Brigade” of the Nigerian Army. It had in attendance, the Emir of Kagara, His Highness Alhaji Salisu Tanko, opinion leaders, various traditional title holders and other members of the Kagara community.
The 31 Artillery Brigade Commander, Brigadier General Gideon Temitope, said that the meeting was to interact with the communities bedeviled by banditry and other related crimes.
Heart to heart discussion
“The town Hall meeting is meant to have a heart to heart discussion with all stakeholders on the security situation bedeviling the environment and to ensure adequate security within the areas covered by the Operation Ayem Akpatuma in parts of Nigeria,” he said.
He therefore, urged people to always relate well with the security agents in their communities as their duty is to protect lives and properties.
The Guest Speaker at the Event, Commrade Mohammed Mohammed commended the Military activities in the region but blamed some of the community members for collaborating with hunted criminals.
However, he pleaded with local politicians,businessmen and elites in the region to empower members of the community especially the youths, to occupy them with meaningful activities.
Commrade Mohammed is a former Chairman of the Niger State Chapter of the Nigerian Union of Journalists.
Another participant at the event, Commrade Abdulkadir Ibrahim suggested the need for a proper synergy and understanding between the security agents and members of the communities, as most of them are always afraid of the Military personnel.
“Most of the Security personnel are not friendly at all as they hardly come close to the people. They regard every person as a suspect. Sometimes, they maltreat the poor people for mistakenly encroaching on their portion, so there is no way you can relay any meaningful information to them,”Ibrahim stated.
He commended the Nigerian Army for organising the Town Hall meeting, saying cordial relationship with host communities would go a long way in flushing out the bandits and their collaborators.
End of session
The 31 Artillery Brigade Commander at the end of the interactive session, provided phone numbers to the public for easier communication with security agencies.
He reaffirmed that the Nigerian Army has the mandate to bring the menace of Armed Banditry to the minimum across the country before the end of the Year.
However, the Emir urged stakeholders to give useful intelligence information to security agencies within their communities, while the Brigade Commander in turn promised that the Nigerian Army and other security agencies deployed to the region, would give their best in ensuring that serenity is restored.