Banditry: Give us Super Tucano aircraft, troops to comb forests – Ayade to FG

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The Governor of Cross River State, Senator Ben Ayade, has pleaded with the Federal Government to deploy Tucano aircraft to comb the forests in Akamkpa Local Government Area, where bandits and kidnappers hold their victims hostage.

The governor has also requested the government to draft Nigerian soldiers into the Uyanga forests in the LGA of the state to help combat suspected bandits and kidnappers.

He made the requests in a press statement he personally signed and released on Wednesday evening.

Last Sunday, there were reports that suspected bandits attacked and took nine motorists, one of them a white national, on the Ugep-Calabar highway amid bloody gunshots.

Ayade swore that he would take the battle to the bandits wherever they are in any part of the state. He appealed for calm, support and cooperation as security agencies had already rescued eight of the victims while the ninth had escaped on his own.

He vowed that such acts of criminality would not be allowed to take root in his state as it would be the last on their soil.

“We have made a request to the federal government to draft more troops to the Uyanga forests and deploy Tucano aircraft to help comb the forests.”

Ayade also disclosed that they have activated the homeland security outfit and engaged local hunters to assist in a private-paramilitary capacity.

He said they would purchase gunboats and more patrol vehicles to cover the waterways and highways.

The governor condemned kidnapping and commended the success of the security agencies in rescuing the victims.