The Emir of Minna, Alhaji Umar Farouk Bahago, has suspended the upcoming Eid-el-Kabir/Sallah durbar to sympathise with the victims of banditry in the emirate.
This development is coming on the heels of incessant bandit attacks on the people of Paikoro, Munya, and Shiroro Local Government Areas in Niger State, within the Minna Emirate.
Recently, bandits attacked Kaffin-Koro LGA and its neighbouring communities in Paikoro LGA, and abducted dozens of farmers. Some of them are still being kept captive.
PMNews reported that the Kimiyan of Minna, Alhaji Yusuf Tanko Kuta, confirmed on Prestige FM Radio’s “Tsalle Daya” that the emirate had finalized plans to hold the annual Sallah durbar when the emir ordered its suspension, citing the kidnapping of dozens of his subjects in rural areas.
Kuta said, “You would recall that some months ago bandits attacked Kaffin-Koro and adjoining communities during which people were kidnapped. As we speak, those that were kidnapped are still in captivity; they have not been rescued.
“And recently, the abductors released a video which went viral in which the world saw how those innocent people were being treated and dehumanised.
“So, the emir feels the pain even though people complained that the emirate council had not held Sallah durbar for years now. But as a leader with a good mind, His Royal Highness feels it won’t be good of him holding durbar when poor farmers from his domain are being held captive for months.”
He added that the emir was being briefed regularly by district heads on the security situation in the banditry-invested communities in his emirate which were all put into consideration before the durbar was suspended.
When contacted by City & Crime, the spokesman of Minna Metro Security Watch, a security outfit formed by the emir to support the conventional security agencies in the fight against security challenges in the emirate, Musa Adamu Maikudi Achaza (Hadimi Minna), said the emir had lived with the pain of how his people had been attacked regularly by bandits.
He said some of the abductees who were still in captivity while some were killed were among the emir’s traditional soldiers who took care of the horses used for the durbar.
“You can imagine the emir going on to hold the Sallah durbar when these people from the rural areas who are always part and parcel of his Sallah durbar are now captives while some have even been killed. It would amount to the emir celebrating on their graves. The public should understand what the emir feels,” he added.