By Abbas Bamalli
Katsina State Government says it has earmarked N100 million for the rehabilitation of Shinfida village affected by banditry in Jibia Local Government Area of the state.
Gov. Aminu Masari disclosed this on Sunday while responding to Gov. Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State who was in Katsina for his presidential ambition.
He explained that over 13,500 residents of that Community were forced out of the area to seek refuge in the neighbouring Niger Republic.
“Currently, we are spending over N100 million to rehabilitate Shinfida village which was sacked and burnt by bandits that forced 13,500 people to move to Niger Republic.
“I have to suspend everything and meet the political leadership of those communities.
“We have sent food to them, and we have started bringing them back. The military are back in Shinfida.
“When the Shinfida people left, the bandits burnt the village and vandalised everything.
“Critical to us is the security and rehabilitation of those villages and communities, restoring their economic way of life and providing basic education.”
He added that although some of the internally displaced persons (IDPs) had started returning to the community, many are still refugees in neighbouring communities in Niger Republic.
Masari said the critical and urgent need of the state was the rehabilitation of the rural economy of the most affected victims.
He lamented that residents of the state, particularly those living in 13 LGAs that bordered Rugu forest had suffered severe attacks and killings by the terrorists.
According to him, the Rugu forest covers Katsina, Zamfara and Kaduna states.
Masari noted that the state government, in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), would prioritise the education of the banditry-orphaned children and widows across the frontline areas of the state.
He reiterated that his government and the UNDP would ensure compulsory and free education of each orphan from primary to secondary level.
The governor added that widows would be provided with financial support to start local businesses for self-reliance.
“We have completed a census of all women who lost their husbands. We have the list of all the orphans, widows and the destroyed houses.
“Already we have started work with UNDP who are coming in to help in some of the areas, particularly education of the orphans,” Masari said. (NAN)
Edited by Idris Abdulrahman