The Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice (AGF), Abubakar Malami (SAN), said the declaration of bandits groups as terrorist organizations is a demonstration by the federal government to crush them. The Abuja Division of the Federal High Court had declared proscribed bandit groups as terrorists.
Justice Taiwo Taiwo had in his ruling, held that activities of Yan Bindiga and Yan Ta’adda bandit groups, constitute acts of terrorism The ruling declaring bandits terrorists followed an ex parte motion the Federal Government filed through the Federal Ministry of Justice.
The motion was moved by the Director of Public Prosecution, DPP, Mohammed Abubakar. FG had in an affidavit it filed in support of the motion, told the court that intelligence reports affirmed that the bandit groups masterminded several killings, abductions, rapes, kidnappings and related acts of criminality in the north-east, north-central and other parts of the country. After he had listened to the government lawyer, Justice Taiwo, accordingly granted the motions as prayed. Justice Taiwo ordered FG to publish the proscription order in the official gazette as well as in two national dailies.
Responding to the verdict of the court, the AGF stated that the declaration is a demonstration of the determination of the office of the Attorney-General of the Federation and indeed the Federal Government in doing things in accordance with the rule of law. In a statement released by his Special Assistant on media and public relations, Dr. Umar Gwandu, Malami said by this declaration the Federal Government of Nigeria has taken bold steps to deal ruthlessly with all terrorists groups and their sponsors in efforts to bring lasting solution to the myriad of insecurity challenges in the country.
The development is a pointer to the commitment of the Federal Government to adhere to the international standards in respecting the rules of engagement in the fight against terrorism, separatists organisations, insurgency and banditry in the country,” he said. He said “the office of the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice in collaboration with relevant government agencies including security operatives are working assiduously to do the needful to take full advantage of this declaration.