Katsina State Governor, Malam Aminu Masari has rejected the request made by a bandit kingpin, Bello Turji for a dialogue with the state government and other state governments in North-Western Nigeria.
Masari made this known in a Sunday interview with DW Hausa radio while he was reacting to a controversial letter by the notorious bandit, Turji, seeking dialogue with the government and traditional rulers.
Turji had written an open letter, seeking dialogue and a ceasefire.
Some experts had argued that the letter by Turji was a ploy to stop airstrikes and military operations against his fighters.
Turji, alongside Halilu Sububu and other terror leaders, has carried out fatal attacks on Eastern Sokoto and Northern Zamfara states.
Masari, the former Speaker of the House of Representatives who had engaged in peace talks with bandits in the past, said the time for a peace accord has expired.
Though the letter was not addressed to him, the Katsina governor said Turji was not sincere in his letter.
“Dialogue? With who? Who is he to talk of dialogue or ceasefire? He is a liar. He can’t tell us peace accord and dialogue. To sit and discuss peace accord with who? In what capacity is he speaking and even calling for dialogue,” Masari said about Turji’s letter.
“Go and tell those he (Mr Turji) killed their families to do dialogue with him and see. And he is even setting conditions, what conditions is he setting and for what? He wants dialogue and he is even setting conditions.”
Turji’s terror group is one of the several gangs of bandits operating in the North-west and North-central states.
The groups, operating as bandits, attack communities at will, killing and kidnapping residents. Over a thousand people are believed to have been killed by such groups this year.
Their activities have continued despite the heavy deployment of security operatives to the area.
SaharaReporters, New York