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Zamfara governor dethrones Emir for aiding banditry

The governor of Zamfara State, Bello Matawalle, on Friday approved the removal of the Emir of Maru, Abubakar Cika, and the district head of Kanoma, Lawal Ahmad, for allegedly giving support to bandits responsible for hundreds of deaths.

The sack was announced in a statement signed by the state deputy governor, Mahdi Aliyu.

The traditional rulers were suspended in June following protests by their subjects amidst allegations of connivance with armed bandits and cattle thieves in their territory.

The government set up a committee headed by the former Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar, to investigate the alleged involvement of the local leaders.

The committee found them wanting and recommended the removal of the emir and the district head. The affected district head is also under Maru emirate council.

Armed assailants have sacked several communities and killed many residents in the north west state for months.

The government has not identified the attackers or their true motives, beyond describing as “bandits”.

The federal government had earlier banned mining of gold in the state in a bid check the attacks, but they have continued.

Mr Matawalle, who came to office in May, has tried to reconcile groups and has offered amnesty to some in a bid to restore peace in the state.

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