No less than eight communities in the Mashegu Local Government Area of Niger State have been allegedly deserted, Daily Post reports.
The communities were deserted following incessant attacks by armed gunmen suspected to be bandits.
The bandits were said to have killed seven villagers and abducted about 26 others in the local government.
Confirming the development, the Executive Chairman of Mashegu, Hon. Umar Jibrin Igede in Minna on Saturday, said so far seven villages in the council have been deserted due to increasing attacks on the area to the Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs, camp in Kontagora.
He cited Kulho, Sahon Rami, and Tashin-Hajiya as the villages where the gunmen had been unleashing terror in the past two weeks.
He stated, “a total of 26 persons have so far been abducted from the affected communities. Seven others were killed by the armed bandits in their renewed onslaught against the residents of the local government in the last five days”.
Igede called on the state government and relevant security agencies to come to their aid, saying, “the attacks of these armed bandits in Mashegu is becoming unbeatable and we need serious assistance from the relevant security agencies to come to our rescue.”
DAILY POST also gathered that on Friday, 31 March, 2023, armed bandits unleashed terror on communities in Munya Local Government, where six persons were killed and 14 others, made up mostly of women, were kidnapped.
It was learnt that the same bandits also ambushed a joint team of security agencies and vigilante operatives, with both sides engaging in a gun duel.
This was said to have led to the killing of two vigilante corps just as several other bandits escaped to the forest with bullet injuries.
However, efforts to get the reaction of the state Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, Mr Emmanuel Bagna Umar, failed as he could not be reached before this report was filed.