By Ishaq Zaki
Thirty six people killed by gunmen in Birane Village in Zurmi Local Council of Zamfara State on Wednesday have been buried, amidst outrage in the social media that the tragedy was being downplayed and that there has been no official reaction.
However, the Police Command in Zamfara admitted that 18 persons died in the attack, which appears to be a reprisal against the villagers for intercepting a suspected cattle rustler.
The Public Relations Officer of the command, DSP Muhammad Shehu, said on Feb. 13, hunters from Birani village of Zurmi local government area intercepted and accosted a herder in the bush with some suspected stolen cattle and sheep.
“The herder abandoned the animals and escaped into the bush, but unknown to the hunters, the cattle rustler went to Isah Local Government Area of Sokoto State and mobilised bandits to attack the hunters.
“On Feb. 14, the bandits ambushed the hunters in the bush and there was a clash that led to fatalities on both sides.
“Police/Military and other sister agencies reacted by combing the bush and it’s environs to salvage the situation and discovered 18 dead bodies.
“It is believed that the bandits took away their own members that were killed. Meanwhile, bush combing is in progress so as to further profile the area.
“Mobile policemen/Special forces and other security personnel from other sister security agencies have already been deployed to the area to restore peace and stability,” he said.
The spokesman also said that the command’s Intelligence Unit had already embarked on investigation to arrest the perpetrators of the attack.
There were comments on social media about the latest tragedy to befall the state, North west of Nigeria.
Bodies of 36 people killed by criminals in Birani Zurmi LGA, Zamfara State laid to rest. If you think the north is safe from spate of these tragedy, or fall in for Politicians gimmick that their is a conspiracy to wipeout the Middle-Belt, use ur brain instead of anus to think. 😰 pic.twitter.com/p22OXNfcIH
— Kwankwasiyya 🔴 (@dadiyata) February 15, 2018
Bodies of the 36 people killed by Armed bandits in Birani Zurmi local government area of Zamfara State laid to rest.
My take: This is not a news to the Nigerian Media because it dnt happen in Benue, Taraba or Adamawa pic.twitter.com/Htal7uybY4
— Abubakar Mohd Kareto (@amkareto) February 15, 2018
Someone from Zamfara called me about these killings last night. It's just so tragic that bandits seem to have overpowered the capacity of the State. It's just so sad that we seem helpless these days…
— Olusegun Adeniyi (@Olusegunverdict) February 15, 2018