Residents of Shiroro community in Niger State has declined pleas by Governor Abubakar Sani Bello to return to their villages.

More than 2,000 people have fled their villages in Shiroro after bandits' attack that left more than 37 people killed while many more were injured.

The governor, who visited the displaced persons on Monday, urged them to return with the assurance that there would be improved security and protection of lives and properties.

The residents turned down the governor’s request saying they are not ready to go through a repeat of the event that left many of their kinsmen dead.

“There was no security in the communities when the attacks were made. We are not ready to pass through another incident of bandits' attack,” a spokesperson for the villagers, Danjuma Tanko, said.

Abdullahi Tanko Zumba, acting Director-General of the Niger State Emergency Management Agency (NSEMA), said there were currently 2,004 persons in the IDP camp in Erena.

Speaking after his visit to the villagers, Bello said the government would make a comprehensive plan to provide adequate security for the villagers if they are ready to return home.

He said, “I have spoken to a few of them and I understand their fear. They are scared to go back home and I do not blame them. I do not blame them for being scared but I think we have sent enough troops to these communities to provide adequate security for the time being. 

“We are doing our best to make sure they go back home as we look at the comprehensive plan for providing more security. We will beef up security in the contiguous areas. Unfortunately, access to these areas is almost impossible because it is mostly mashy and rocky but we have been able to send security personnel there so that the local people can go back to their various homes.”

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