The Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) has welcomed the declaration of Zamfara as a ‘no-fly-zone’, and requested that, the declaration be extended to Benue, Taraba and Borno states.
It said extension to Benue, Borno and Taraba will help check the alleged dropping of arms for criminals by helicopters in the states.
National Publicity of ACF, Emmanuel Yawe said: “First, the Chairman of ACF, Chief Audu Ogbe congratulates the people and government of Zamfara State on the safe release of the kidnapped pupils from the Government Girls Secondary School in the state.
“He is also happy with and commended the Federal Government’s decision to ban flights in the state.
“He is therefore pleading with the government to extend the ban to other states like Benue, Taraba, Borno where there are rumors that helicopters frequently drop arms for bandits and insurgents operating in these states.
“Our belief is that such an extended ban will curtail the operations of the criminals in these areas.”
However,the Presidency has revealed that the need to curtail the influx of arms and other logistics into the state necessitated the need to declare ‘No-Fly-Zone’ in Zamfara State.
Speaking to newsmen in the State House Wednesday evening, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu, also explained the No-fly-zone was also meant to put an end to the illegal exportation of Nigerian gold from the mines in the state.
Giving a graphic explanation of what declaring a no-fly-zone is, the Presidential spokesman said from the moment it was directed by President Muhammadu Buhari, it had become a rule, its violation would attract any form of military action.
According to him, the declaration became necessary following clues the aircrafts that find their ways into the area were not on lawful and humanitarian missions.
Rather it said they were fuelling the violence and insecurity in the area further by ferrying arms, ammunition, food and other logistics to bandits and other criminal elements as well as evacuating illegally mined gold out of the country.
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