An Abuja court declared bandits as terrorists on Friday, November 26, 2021. Justice Taiwo proscribed two bandit’s groups that are notorious for different atrocities in Nigeria. They are the Yan Bindiga and Yan Ta’adda group.
Although the case was brought before the Abuja court by the federal government of Nigeria, the bandit’s group have not been declared as terrorists by the Buhari administration. Rather, they have been considered as “mere” criminals causing havoc here and there.
On several occasions, the Minister of information Alhaji Lai Muhammed has defended the governments refusal to categorize bandits as terrorists.
He also explained that proscribed groups like the Indigenous People of Biafra have an ideology that is why they were proscribed while bandits are just hungry criminals.
While the government first proscribed IPOB then got a court order to validate their decision, it is the court that declared the bandits as terrorists. However, the case was brought before the court by the federal government thus necessitating a reaction from President Buhari.
Garba Shehu, the president’s senior special advisor on Media and Femi Adesina are yet to issue any statement or reaction from President Buhari over the development. Rather, they have been reacting to the visit of the US Secretary of State Anthony Bliken to Nigeria.
Interestingly, only two bandits group action have been categorized as acts of terrorism. Nigerians still look on for a reaction from President Buhari.