Bad Case For Kidnappers and Cattle Rustlers in Katsina State As Massari Signs Death Penalty Law

By Suleiman ZUmaru

This is not the best of times for criminal elements, particular kidnappers and Cattle  Rustlers in Katsina, President Muhammadu Buhari , home state.   Bello Masari, a former Speaker, House of Representatives and governor of the state, at the instance of the state House of Assembly has signed into Law the mandatory death sentence  for anyone convicted  of any of the crimes.  

The penalty, according to the governor , also carries a  life imprisonment  and fine  including compensation for the victim if wrongfully charged.  The laws are coming on the heels of the recent kidnap of Musa Daura, a former Customs Comptroller, Federal Operations Unit, FOU, Zone A, Ikeja, and now Magajin Garin, the next in rank in the traditional hierarchy  of Authority  to the  Emir of Daura, whose where about  iremains  unknown.

 The  case of the Kidnapped District Head  may have been  made worse as the kidnappers  have refused  to make phone contact with the family to make their financial deman to avoid been traced by  the Department of State Security  , DSS, operatives, who are everywhere in the state and outside the state   combing to get a clue about the kidnappers.  The  Nigerian security operatives  are also  said  to be in touch  with their counterparts in  the neighbouring  West African country of Niger.

Hassan Musa   Shinfida, was  another victim of the kidnappers in the state. Musa who was said to have been sold to another kidnap gang  for N 250,000.00 was released recently after  the family had paid a ransom of N1 million with a message to   the Village Head to settle them with additional  N10million or the   kidnapping  activities  in the area would continue unabated. They were right as  there have been several other kidnap cases in the area and state in general  since then.

They were said to have also sent a message to Tukur Buratai, a Lt, General  and Chief of Army Staff, to come and collect  the guns  seized from  soldiers in an ambush, an indication that the Bandits have informants who  are feeding   them with information about the movement of soldiers in the area.

Unlike Daura, the Magajin Garin who was kidnapped in his country home,  Shifda, was abducted by a 20-man gang  on his way from  to neighbouring  Gurbin  Bature market day   to sell his 12 bags  of sweet potatoes , harvested from his farm.

Bello Massari: Governor of Katsina State    Toying Buhari 184 Aeath Penalty Law

The governor may have further been encouraged to sign  the mandatory  death penalty  Bill into Law  after being summoned to the Presidential Villa, by Buhari,  over the recent attacks  in three Communities in Dan Musa,  Faskari and  Batsari Local government Areas  where about 30 people were  said to have been killed. The death of the Katsina state indigenes may have touched the President who believes that a  decisive  need to be taken  to teach the kidnappers and Cattle rustlers a lesson they will never forget in their life.

Many believe that  the signing into Law of the draconian Bill by the governor, which has the backing of the Katsina state born Nigerian President,  would discourage the Bandits  who have penetrated the ranks of the Youths in the  state through the adjoing forest  from Zamfara to beat a retreat as they may easily be caught in the act giving  the tight security arrangement   in the state.

Note that an aggrieved President Buhari  had earlier  given a matching Order to  Mohammed Abubakar Adamu,then an Inspector General of Police, IGP, now Confirmed  and Abayomi Gabriel Olonisakin, a  General and Chief of Defence Staff, CDS,  To constitute  an assessment team  to intervene  immediatly on the  state and give him feedback to know what next to do.

He was said to have also instructed  the Security Chiefs  to find out” how the Bandits, Cattle rustlers and kidnappers  carry out their operations”  in a bid to  confront them headlong and block their major routes  of gaining access to the state. The Presidential mandate to the  security Chiefs and the mandatory death penalty that had been signed into law by the governor in the state  appears to have sent  a signal to the criminal elements that it is  no longer  going  to be business as ususal in Katsina state as many of them  may have relocated to back to Zamfara state  and other states in the north , where the   death penalty has not been adopted.

there are fears in both official and unofficial circles that  the mandatory death penalty Law , which has been adopted by the Katsina state government may be extended to other states in the north west geo-political region , particular Zamfara and Kaduna states.. A security source informed  The Value News that even  if  the  successor to  Abdulaziz Yari,  the governor of Zamfara state  may be reluctant to sign  such a bill if it comes to his table, Nasir el-Rufai,  governor of Kaduna state,  who believes in  Buhari ‘s policies and actions,  wouldquickly sign  such  a mandatory death penalty , whenever the House , forward such a bill to him.

Already there are pressures on the  House  members to  quickly  foot step of the Katsina House of Assembly by initiating  such a Bill which would be handed over to the incoming  House members to  treat  and forward to  the state governor for his assent. Nigerians  are waiting  to see how many states  in the country that will cue into the  mandatory death policy  for kidnappers and Cattle rustlers caught in the act.

Many believe that the events of 1984, when  Buhari, then  as a Major General and the  country Head of State  had , issued and signed the mandatory  death penalty decree N0.4 of 184, for those dealing in drugs , which claimed the lives of  Bernard Ogedegbe,29, Bartholomew Owoh, 26 and  Lawal  Ojuolape, 30 ,  before it was abrogated  in 1985, by the populist regime rt. General Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida, in 1985, are about to repeat itself again.

 This is bad news for Kidnappers and Cattlers, in Katsina, who are likely  to  fall victim to the Law  for daring the President   to  carry out their Criminal activities in Katsina  state as Massari , the state governor , would not spare them as he would give the go ahead for them to be executed according to the Law .

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