The Federal Government on Sunday said it has suspended mining activities in Zamfara state following series of attacks by bandits.
It also ordered foreign miners to immediately leave mining sites in Zamfara States and its environs.
The Acting Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, disclosed this why briefing State House correspondents at the Presidential Villa Abuja.
He said that any foreign miner that continues mining activities would have his licence revoked.
According to him, there was a nexus between activities of the bandits and illicit miners.
He also disclosed that a combined team of security forces will be dispatched to the area.
At the briefing was the Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari; Director General, Department of State Services (DSS); Yusuf Bichi and Director General National Intelligence Agency (NIA), Ahmed Abubakar.
Meanwhile, the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) said the Air Task Force (ATF) for Operation Diran Mikiya has successfully destroyed a bandits’ logistics base at Ajia in Birnin Magaji Local Government Area of Zamfara.
Air Commodore Ibikunle Daramola, NAF Director of Public Relations and Information, disclosed this in a statement issued in Abuja.
He said the ATF also neutralised dozens of the bandits at Ajia and Wonaka in Birnin Magaji Local Government Area of Zamfara.
Daramola explained that the operation was executed sequel to Human Intelligence (HUMINT) reports indicating that the bandits were using a compound within Ajia as a logistics store to support their operations.
“Consequently, the ATF dispatched a Nigerian Air Force (NAF) Alpha Jet, supported by an Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) platform, to attack the compound scoring accurate strikes on the target and causing it to erupt into flames, which engulfed the structures and resulted in the neutralisation of some of the bandits,” he said.
The spokesman said few survivors, seen fleeing the vicinity of the target area, were taken out in follow-on attacks while others, who managed to escape the area, were tracked to Wonaka and equally neutralised.
“Independent HUMINT sources subsequently confirmed that more than 25 bandits were neutralised in the attacks on the two locations.
“The NAF, working in close coordination with sister services and other security agencies, will sustain its operations to neutralise the bandits and deny them freedom of action in the North West,” he said.