Ramadan Package: Defence Minister Matawalle Donated 50 Bags of Rice to Wanted Bandits Details Emerge

Gusau, Zamfara state – A news blog recently claimed that its investigation found out that the minister of state for defence, Bello Mohammed Matawalle, distributed 50 bags of rice to some selected bandits in Zamfara state.

The blog claimed that Matawalle, who is the immediate past governor of Zamfara state, made the donation via Honourable Musa Bawa Yankuzo.

A report claiming the defence minister Matawalle donated 50 bags of Rrce to bandits has been dismissed.

However, Zamfara Newsletter, a Zamfara-based news platform, has debunked the report, saying that it is “another desperate failed move to discredit the hard-earned name” of the minister by the opposition

The news platform said Yankuzo, who was accused of giving the package to one of the most wanted bandit leaders Ado Aleiro, on Sunday, March 17, denied the allegation.

“Honourable Musa Bawa Yankuzo left the Country on the 5th of March 2024 for Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to perform Umrah and is expected to arrive Nigeria first week of May 2024,” an ally of Yankuzo was quoted as saying in a statement sent to Legit.ng.

The news media also stated that Abdullahi Headmaster, who was alleged to have stored the rice, denied the allegation.

He reportedly said that he is in consultation with his lawyers to sue the news blog.

PDP accused of being behind allegation

Meanwhile, Zamfara Newsletter claimed its investigation showed that the story was sponsored by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and amplified by one Abdul Balarabe.

Balarabe was said to be a media aide to the Zamfara state governor Dauda Lawal.

Legit.ng cannot confirm this claim at the time of filing this report.

Did Matawale distribute foodstuff to bandits? Group reacts

In a related development, Arewa Youth for Peace and Security has strongly criticised Zamfara state governor, Lawal, accusing him of neglecting security issues in the state.

The criticism comes after the report claiming that Matawalle provided food supplies to the Ado Aliero-led bandits who are causing havoc in Zamfara.

The group alleged that Governor Lawal exaggerated security concerns during Matawalle’s tenure to gain attention and support but has failed to fulfil his promises to address the situation effectively now that he is in power.