Terrorists, otherwise known as bandits, are now demanding foodstuff as ransom in rural Sokoto, following closure of many markets across four states of the North West.
A resident of Sabo Birni, who spoke to Daily Trust on the condition of anonymity, revealed how the child of one of his neighbours regained freedom after giving out food items.
“They abducted a daughter of one man in our village and when he could not raise the money, they asked him to bring 10 measures of rice to collect the girl and they kept their promises,” the source said.
Another resident of Sokoto told the newspaper how bandits requested for food items and drinks to release an abducted driver.
“They initially demanded for N15 million before later agreed to accept N600,000.
“They asked his employer who is my friend to use the money to buy bags of rice, crates of energy drinks (Fearless), cartons of spaghetti, cigarettes and bring the remaining change to them. The man is still trying to raise the money,” he said
A security analyst, Aminu Bala Sokoto, said the situation has shown that the current military onslaught on bandits in Zamfara is yielding result.
“The operation is crippling them because it is not only targeting them, it is also targeting their storage facilities. They are now in a state of disarray, looking for survival.
“And their situation is compounded with the shut down of GSM network in Zamfara and Katsina because they cannot reach out to the relatives of their captives.
“I hope the shut down will cover other states in the region,” he said