According to Aminu Almustapha Gobir, member of Sokoto House of Assembly for Sabon Birni North Constituency, bandits are now using Niger Republic’s network service to coordinate attacks.
In order to combat banditry, the Nigerian government had shut down telecommunications services in three states – Sokoto, Zamfara, and Katsina.
As a result, bandits and their informants were reportedly unable to communicate.
In order to circumvent the security measure, bandits are now using the telecom service of the neighbouring country through which Nigeria shares a border with.
The bandit who is using Nigerien network service sent Gobir a message threatening his life.
The bandit threatened to lead his gang to attack him and his community.
A military base in the Sabo Birni Local Government area of the state was also attacked, according to Gobir.
Several of them remain missing despite the fact that 12 of them were killed at a military base at Dama.”
I faulted the government for shutting down the GSM network without a serious military operation taking place in the eastern part of the state.
The bandits now use the Nigerien network as a means of communicating with one another and conducting their heinous activity.
Since there is no GSM network in Sokoto East, I expect our Governor to provide the Divisional Police Officers and the military with Thuraya phones so they can communicate with each other as well as their superior officers.
According to him, the action taken by the governor of Zamfara is paying off in a positive way.
As of the time of filing this report, Major Yahaya Ngulde, the spokesman for the 8 Division of the Nigerian Army, could not be reached for comment.
The Police Public Relation Officer, ASP Sanusi Abubakar, said he was not aware of the attack on the military base.
Additionally, he did not comment on the use of Nigerien telecom services.
Colonel Garba Moyi (rtd), Commissioner for Carriers and Security Matters, confirmed the attack on the military base, but was unsure of the number of casualties.
He said bandits may use foreign networks to coordinate attacks due to the proximity of Niger Republic.