President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday ordered service chiefs to take out sponsors and masterminds of banditry and kidnapping in the country, adding that the era when the military acts like reactionary agents will no longer be tolerated.
The National Security Adviser (NSA), Babagana Monguno, disclosed this while speaking to State House correspondents after a meeting the President had with the service chiefs before his trip to the United Kingdom for a medical check-up.
Monguno said: “On the issues of kidnapping and banditry, this menace still persists, especially in the North West and the North-Central zones.
“Mr President has been very emphatic. He has stated clearly that this problem must be brought to an end, but using the traditional methods that the armed forces have been trained to deploy.
“Mr President has made it very clear to both the intelligence and operational elements that the first assignment will be to identify the leaders of these bandits, kidnappers and take them out, in order to restore confidence in those areas.
“Mr President has said that he will no longer tolerate a situation whereby bandits and kidnappers are the ones dictating the pace and setting the tone and he will not also condone a situation in which our own operations are reactionary rather than being proactive.
“He has also indicated his willingness to provide all the resources required by our own troops in order to put down these criminals. They must be brought down with all the ruthlessness that is required and whoever is working in collaboration with them will be brought to book.”