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BREAKING: Tinubu Government To Establish Armed Forest Guards To Tackle Banditry, Kidnapping — Presidency

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The President Bola Tinubu-led Nigerian Government has disclosed its plans to establish forest guards and coastal guards to fight banditry and other security problems the country has been facing in recent years.

The Special Adviser on Information & Strategy to the President, Bayo Onanuga, said this on Monday night while featuring on an Arise News TV programme monitored by SaharaReporters.

He stated that the government is currently putting everything in place to install the guards, armed security operatives, whose work is to keep all forests across the country safe from harbouring bandits and terrorists who abduct Nigerians on highways.

He said, “The President is very much concerned about the problems of insecurity. He wants to implement the idea of Forrest guards, not just forest guards. He also wants to do something like coastal guards. Is it not a shame that in our country today, that coast and our oil resources are being protected by non-state actors? When we have the Navy, when we have the civil defence and everybody who is supposed to guard those things. And we still hire non-state actors to do it.

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“The President is concerned. He wants to set up coastal guard, he wants to set up the forest guards. And I can tell you that we still discussed it last week, and he is very committed to do it.

“I think he is trying to take his time to ensure there is no mistake about it. Everybody knows that those people are kidnapping our people, the bandits and so on. They use the forest that we have as a refuge. And the only way we can destroy them is to have people who are well-armed to counter them, the forest guards is in his plan. He wants to do it,” he added.

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Recall that the civil society groups, under the aegis of the Civil Society Joint Action Group, had said no fewer than 17,469 Nigerians were abducted under the Muhammadu Buhari and Bola Tinubu administrations from 2019 to date.

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SaharaReporters had also reported a lot of kidnappings and killings by bandits and gunmen in Nigeria recently.

One of the most recent of them was the killing of Onimojo of Imojo in the Oye Local Government Area, Oba Olatunde Olusola, and the Elesun of Esun Ekiti in the Ikole Local Government Area, Oba Babatunde Ogunsakin by the gunmen in January.

It was learnt that another traditional ruler, the Alara of Ara Ekiti, Oba Adebayo Fatoba escaped being killed by the suspected terrorists that killed his colleagues.

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