The Katsina State Governor, Aminu Masari, has called on residents of the state to arm themselves and confront bandits because security officials alone cannot tackle insecurity in the state.
Katsina, like other North-west states of Zamfara, Kaduna, Sokoto and Kebbi, has witnessed incessant attacks by terror groups.
Hundreds of people have been killed or kidnapped in Katsina this year with thousands more displaced from their homes.
Speaking during a media parley with journalists at the Muhammadu Buhari House in Katsina, Mr Masari said the number of security personnel is not enough to tackle the situation.
“It’s Islamically allowed for one to defend himself against attack. One must rise to defend himself, his family and assets. If you die while trying to defend yourself, you’ll be considered a martyr. It’s surprising how a bandit would own a gun while a good man trying to defend himself and his family doesn’t have one,” the governor said.
Mr Masari said the state government would help those who plan to own arms with the view to help bring an end to banditry.
“We’ll support those who come with the initiative to procure arms because residents need to also complement the efforts of security agencies. These people (security agents) don’t have the number to protect the people. When President Buhari came, he even tried by increasing the number of our security agents but it’s inadequate. Count it yourself, how many policemen do we have in this country? How many soldiers do we have?
“Even if we say every policeman should go back to his home state, it’ll still not be enough. So, if we fold arms and decide to do nothing, we’ll be the ones to suffer most,” he lamented.
Mr Masari said the police would register all guns bought by the residents to ensure they are put to the right use.