By Akinwande Soji-Ojo
The Federal Government has declared bandits as terrorists.
After weeks of foot-dragging, the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), gazetted a court judgement that ordered the government to declare bandits as terrorists.
Justice Taiwo Taiwo of the Federal High Court in Abuja had on November 25, 2021, granted an ex parte application by the Federal Government for Yan Bindiga (Hausa word for gunmen) and Yan Ta’adda (Hausa word for terrorists) to be declared as terrorists but the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari has been foot-dragging on the judgement
However, the AGF, in an interview on Tuesday, said his office was in the process of gazetting the court judgement, adding that the process would be concluded in a matter of days.
Also, a document released by Malami’s spokesman, Umar Gwandu, on Wednesday, showed that the AGF office had gazetted the court order.
The gazette proscribing bandit groups in the North as terrorists was unfolded on Wednesday, and signed by the Attorney-General of the Federation and Ministr of Justice, Mr. Abubakar Malami (SAN).
According to the gazette, bandits will henceforth face trial under the Terrorism (Prevention) Act 2011.
It read in part: “Notice is hereby given that by the Order of the Federal High Court Abuja, in suit No. FHC/ABJ/CS/1370/2021 dated 25th November, 2021 as per the schedule to this Notice, the Activities of Yan Bindiga Group, Yan Ta’adda Group and other similar group in Nigeria are declared to be terrorism and illegal in any part of Nigeria, especially in the North West and North-Central Regions of Nigeria and are proscribed, pursuant to sections 1 and 2 of the Terrorism (Prevention) Act, 2011.
“Consequently the general public is hereby warned that any person or group of persons participating in any manner whatsoever in any form of activities involving or concerning the prosecution of the collective intentions or otherwise of the groups referred to in paragraph 1 of this Notice will be violating the provisions of the Terrorism (Prevention) Act, 2011 and liable to prosecution.”