Presidency, on Monday, blamed the spike in violent attacks in Katsina State on some traditional rulers in the home state of President Muhammadu Buhari.
It specifically accused the royal fathers in Katsina of sponsoring banditry in the state.
Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, made this allegation on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily programme on Monday.
According to Shehu, “It is not that we are making direct accusations on anyone but it is also true that even in the President’s native state of Katsina, some traditional rulers have been found complicit in collaboration with the bandits to harm their own people.
“In neighbouring Zamfara, emirs and district heads, quite a number of them have been swept out of office. The thing is there are beneficiaries of whatever rotten system you have.”
The President’s media aide noted that at the height of violent conflicts in Zamfara State, the Nigerian Air Force stationed aircraft in Katsina airport from where they could launch attacks against bandits in Zamfara.
He explained that once the aircraft took off, some unscrupulous elements in Katsina would quickly inform the bandits in Zamfara State of the impending air raid, giving them ample time to take cover.
Shehu added, “At some point, the Nigerian Air Force had to put a number of aircraft in Katsina, they are still there. In the early part of that operation attacking Zamfara, which then was the epicentre.
“They realised that once aircraft took off from Katsina airport, before it got to Zamfara for operation, telephone calls would have been made and targets would have disappeared. In the end, we were forced to be flying from distant places like Kaduna and Kano in order to undertake operations in Zamfara.
“Some people see President Buhari and think he has all the solutions. No. All of us as citizens have a duty to the nation to provide information to our armed forces.”
There had been a rise in banditry in Katsina State in recent times, resulting in a series of protests by residents.
Last week, billboards bearing the President’s and Governor Aminu Masari’s pictures were vandalised as they accused them of failing to protect.