BANDITS on Monday ambushed local vigilantes and killed no fewer than seven and injured several others in the Mashegu Local Government Area of Niger state.

The bandits were said to have also burnt over 50 motorcycles belonging to the vigilante

The incident was said to have occurred when the vigilantes mobilised to launch an attack on the bandits hideout after they (bandits) had killed seven farmers in the area two weeks earlier.

The Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Ibrahim Matane, who confirmed the development to our correspondent, described it as “unfortunate”.

Matane, however, explained that government in collaboration with all the security agencies in the state had begun a massive assault on bandits lurking around forests in the state saying, “Recently, the security agencies burnt down completely one of the camps of the bandits.”

Meanwhile, not less than 40 Fulani and some members of their families were arrested by security operatives on Monday at the Abdulsalami Abubakar motor park in Minna.

Also 10 locals suspected to be informants to different groups of bandits have been arrested by security agents in the state.

Also a chief negotiator for ransom between the villagers and a group of bandits have fled the community with his entire family, while two ferry drivers, who aided his escape with their ferry was picked up by the security agents

When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Wasiu Abiodun, promised to investigate and get back to our correspondent, but has yet to do so as of the time of filing this report.