The Senate and the House of Representatives on Thursday condemned the killing of 39 persons in Sokoto State by suspected bandits on Tuesday.

The Sokoto State Government was reported on Thursday to have held a mass burial on Wednesday for 32 people, who were killed when bandits on motorcycles invaded villages in Rabah Local Government Area of the state. Compared to the neighbouring Zamfara, Sokoto has been peaceful.

While Senator Adamu Aliero (Kebbi-Central) and his counterpart,  Aliyu Wamakko (Sokoto-North), who both sponsored a motion that condemned the killings,  put the number of people that died at 40, in the House, a member from the state, Mr Aminu Shagari, said about 32 persons were killed.

But the state Governor, Alhaji Aminu Tambuwal, while receiving seven governors on Thursday said besides the 32 people, who were buried, seven more corpses were brought to the villages on Wednesday.

At the plenary, the Senate condemned the killings and urged the Federal Government to deploy more security personnel and equipment in Sokoto State.

While calling for more security presence in Sokoto and the neighbouring states, the upper chamber of the National Assembly urged the military, Nigeria Police and the Department of State Services to combat the killers collectively.

The call followed the adoption of a motion moved by Aliero and Wamakko entitled “Gruesome Killing of 40 People in Sokoto State by Bandits.”

Granting prayers of the motion, the lawmakers unanimously resolved to “urge the Federal Government to mandate the Nigerian Air Force and the Nigeria Police’s helicopter divisions to carry out an aerial surveillance of Sokoto, Zamfara and Kebbi states, with the view to identifying locations and hideouts of these bandits and dealing with them decisively.”

The lawmakers also urged the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, through the commissioners of police in the three states to set up a “special squad” to mop up the whole zone and get rid of the bandits.

They also called for “synergy between the DSS, the police and the armed forces with the view to sharing intelligence and strategies in getting rid of the bandits.”

While the lawmakers resolved to observe a one-minute silence in honour of those killed, which was done, they requested the National Emergency Management Agency to send emergency relief materials to the affected communities.

The Senate further resolved to send a delegation to condole with the government and people of Sokoto State over the attacks.

The Punch

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