By Wole Mosadomi
Bandits terrorising communities in Niger State weekend opened fire on themselves, leaving 12 dead in Shiroro Local Government Area. Beside those killed, several others suffered various degrees of injuries but managed to escape the “battle ground”.
This scenario which happened last Friday in the community, led to the disappearance of some other bandits from the area.
Vanguard learned from an impeccable source in the village that there was a sharp disagreement between the leader of the gang and his boys over ransom paid to them earlier.
The leader, popularly called Mallam Dogogide, had accused his boys of short-changing him after their previous operations.
Dogogide is said to be one of the leaders of the three notorious bandits gangs operating within Shiroro, Rafi and Munya Local Government Areas in Niger and Birnin Gwari in Kaduna State.
It was also gathered that Dogogide had frowned at the laid down operational rules by killing villagers indiscriminately and raping married women.
Angered by this, he summoned his boys for a meeting and threatened to sack them and replace them with new recruits. The action, it was gathered, did not go down well with his boys and this was said to have led to a heated argument.
Vanguard gathered that in the process, one of his boys attempted to kill him when he opened fire but his boss deflected the bullet.
Loyalists of the leader who were angered by the disloyalty to Dogogide fought back in defence of their leader, opened fire and gunned down 12 of the disgruntled ones, while others escaped. The source further revealed that some of the bandits later stormed the village after the “battle” and abducted ten men to help bury the dead bodies.
The ten abductees were, however, released after the burial as the bandits fled the community.
Some of the villagers are said to have fled the area out of fear that the bandits might later invade their community and kill them.