Court declares bandits as terrorists

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Justice Taiwo Taiwo of the Federal High Court, Abuja, has declared the activities of bandits in Nigeria as acts of terrorism.

The judge gave the order on an ex parte motion filed by the federal government.

Mohammed Abubakar, director of public prosecution (DPP) at the federal ministry of justice, who filed the motion ex-parte, said President Muhammadu Buhari gave approval for his action, of which objective is the proscription of Yan Bindiga and Yan Ta’adda groups and other terrorist groups in the country.

A supporting affidavit, filed by Aminu Kayode Alilu of the ministry, explained why the application was made.

The oath pointed out that Yan Bindiga, Yan Ta’adda and others were responsible for “wanton destruction of lives and properties in Nigeria, particularly in the Northwest and North-central states”.

It mentioned, “kidnappings for ransom, kidnapping for marriage, mass abductions of school children and other citizens, cattle rustling, enslavement, imprisonment, severe deprivation of physical liberty, torture, rape, sexual slavery, enforced prostitution, forced pregnancy, other forms of sexual violence, attacks and killings”.

Delivering ruling on Thursday, the court specifically declared the activities of the “Yan Bindiga group” and the “Yan Ta’adda group” and other similar groups in any part of the country, especially in the north-west and the north-central as “acts of terrorism and illegality”.

The judge directed the Federal Government to publish the proscription order in the official gazette and two national dailies.

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