Armed ViolenceNews

Insecurity: Zamfara, Borno Hardest Hit As Nigeria Records 122 Deaths In 2 Weeks

Violent incidents, including ongoing insurgency in Nigeria’s northern region, claimed the lives of at least 122 people in the past two weeks, with the greatest death tolls in Zamfara and Borno states.

This was learnt through an analysis of data from the Nigeria Security Tracker (NST), a project of the Council on Foreign Relations that documents violence in the country, between Monday, September 7, and Friday, September 18. There were a total of 56 violent incidents recorded during the period.

Thirty-one (31) people were killed in Zamfara, 26 in Borno, 10 people in Kaduna and the Lake Chad area, and nine in Katsina. 

Six people lost their lives in the Extrême-Nord in Cameroon bordering Nigeria, four were killed each Nasarawa and Yobe, three each in Ekiti and Kogi, two each in Abia, Sokoto and Taraba, and one each in Benue, Delta, Imo, Lagos, Ogun, Ondo, Osun, and Plateau.

Among the fatalities were 39 civilians, 18 security operatives, and seven sectarian actors. Twenty-two suspected members of Boko Haram, three robbers, two kidnappers, and 38 other armed persons were also killed. Ten bandits each were killed in three separate military airstrikes conducted in Zamfara on September 13, 15, and 17. 

The NST additionally noted that at least 109 people were abducted, with 37 of the victims kidnapped in Kaduna, 30 in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), 11 Katsina, and 10 in Nasarawa. 

Five people were abducted in each of Rivers and Zamfara, three in Ekiti and Kogi, two in Lagos and Sokoto, and then one in Delta State.

On Thursday, September 10, over 30 people in Tunga Maji, a community in the FCT, were abducted by gunmen after they engaged the local vigilantes in a gun battle close to midnight. 

In the two days following this attack, 21 people were kidnapped by bandits in Udawa, a village in Kaduna’s Chikun Local Government Area. 

A community leader, Liman Hussaini, told journalists that security operatives only arrived after the invaders had slipped away with their victims.

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo, recently said, to the agreement of Nobel Laureate Wole Soyinka, that Nigeria was speedily on its way to becoming a failed and badly divided state. 

“Economically our country is becoming a basket case and poverty capital of the world, and socially, we are firming up as an unwholesome and insecure country,” the three-time head of state added.

Reacting to the poor state of security in the region, the Coalition of North East Elders for Peace and Development called on the federal government, on Sunday, to sack the service chiefs.

“The worsening security situation in the country is further reinforcing the urgent need to inject new hands with fresh ideas to handle the nation’s security architecture. 

We have seen that the security situation under the current service chiefs has reached an unbearable state,” the group stated.

“There is no denying the fact that at this moment, the entire nation is distressed by the incessant mindless killing of our citizens and pillaging of defenseless communities by insurgents, bandits and kidnappers. 

“There is no denying the fact also that these have resulted in indescribable agony, anguish and torment to the Nigerian citizens,” the group added.

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'Kunle Adebajo

Head of Investigations at HumAngle. ‘Kunle covers conflict alongside its many intricacies and fallouts. He also writes about disinformation, the environment, and human rights. He's won a couple of journalism awards, including the 2021 Wole Soyinka Award for Investigative Journalism, the 2022 African Fact-checking Award, and the 2023 Michael Elliott Award for Excellence in African Storytelling.

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