By; BALA B. BITRUS, Minna
In furtherance of the order banning the use of motorcycles in forest areas in North West zone by military authorities to curb incessant attacks by men of the underworld who use motorcycles to perpetrate attacks and arson, Niger State Government has further given a bite to the order by outlawing the use of motorcycles in all forest and bushland communities of the state.
Bandits and other criminal elements such as kidnappers, armed bandits and other marauders in rural communities, particularly in forest, bushlands of Munya, Shiroro, Rafi council areas of the state have taken over several communities where they unleashed mayhem and escaped uncaught on their motorcycles unhindered.
The Military authorities in the 1 Mechanized Division of the Nigeria Army had recently issued order restricting the use of motorcycles in forest areas of communities in the states within the North Central and North West zones following increase in attacks and banditry by armed criminal elements on motorcycles.
A resolution of an expanded Niger state security council meeting held in the Government House, Minna, declared the ban on the use of motorcycles in forest areas of the state henceforth to check the growing cases of attacks by criminal elements.
Commissioner of Information and Strategy in the state, Danjuma Sallau in a statement on the latest security checks by the state government, explained that the measure was a necessary step to check the activities of bandits and other dangerous elements operating in communities in parts of the state.
He said all commercial motorcyclists operating in the state are to be registered with the state government and obtain government identity cards as a check on crime waves.
Effective from the first day of next month, (June), all motorcycles owners in the state must be registered and properly documented or they risk arrest and prosecution.
He said the step was part of the measures aimed at dealing with security challenges posing threats to corporate existence of the state and to guard lives and property of innocent citizens.
The Commissioner disclosed that the state government has purchased ten Hillux vehicles and sixty motorcycles to beef up surveillance in dark spots within communities including in remote areas of the state.
He disclosed that all council heads in the state have been mandated to step up routine security checks and ensure that community policing was stepped up and that all hoteliers and owners of Guest Houses in their localities were made members of security watch team for each the council areas of the state.
Danjuma Sallau said the state’s security council would continue to review strategies to ensure a crime-free Niger state for the good of all law abiding citizens across the state.
He disclosed that the state government had met with several relevant stakeholders to curtail the rate of crime waves in the state.
The Commissioner pleaded with citizens in the state to assist in providing useful information on the activities of criminal elements and their hideouts in all parts of the state for safety of lives and property of all.