Nigerian state imposes phone ban amid kidnapping campaign

Nigerian state imposes phone ban amid kidnapping campaign

MAIDUGURI, Nigeria, Sept 6 (Reuters) – Mobile telephone networks were shut down in the northwestern Nigerian state of Zamfara, residents said on Monday, after authorities ordered a telecoms blackout to help armed forces tackle armed gangs of kidnappers terrorising the area.

Security forces patrol as people wait for the arrival of the rescued schoolgirls in Jangebe, Zamfara, Nigeria March 3, 2021. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde/File Photo

Two residents of Zamfara, reached by phone after they travelled to neighbouring Sokoto State, said their mobile networks had stopped functioning over the weekend. Calls to police and officials inside the state were not going through.

The blackout was “to enable relevant security agencies (to) carry out required activities towards addressing the security challenge in the state”, according to a letter from the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to network provider Globacom.

Zamfara has been one of the worst-hit states in a wave of mass abductions of pupils from schools across northwestern Nigeria by armed gangs of ransom seekers operating from remote camps.

A source at the Nigerian air force, asked to comment on media reports that military operations against the gangs were under way, said: “We are clearing these elements fiercely and decisively. It’s a total operation.”

The NCC letter instructed Globacom to suspend phone and internet services to Zamfara from Sept. 3 for an initial two weeks. Reuters could not immediately reach Globacom for comment.

Britain’s Foreign Office updated its Nigeria travel advice, warning about the blackout in Zamfara and saying areas of neighbouring states may also be affected.

In the latest incident in Zamfara, more than 70 pupils were kidnapped from a secondary school in the village of Kaya last week. read more One of the Zamfara residents contacted by Reuters, lecturer Abubakar Abdullahi Alhasan, said he had heard that a military crackdown had been going on since the mobile networks had stopped working.

“The Nigerian air force and army were succeeding in dislodging some of the bandits’ camps. They killed many and recovered arms and ammunition while many others were arrested,” he said. Military spokespeople in the capital Abuja were not responding to requests for comment.

Reporting by Maiduguri Newsroom, Ardo Hazzad and Camillus Eboh; writing by Estelle Shirbon; Editing by Andrew Heavens and Alex Richardson

Disclaimer: If you need to edit or update this news from compsmag then kindly contact us Learn more

For Latest News Follow us on Google News


Latest Headlines
  • Show all
  • Trending News
  • Popular By week
GLIMPSES: Barbados PM dials into UN issues with phone in hand
GLIMPSES: Barbados PM dials into UN issues with phone in hand
Mottley, who became prime minister of the Caribbean country in 2018, spoke energetically and seemingly off the cuff, delivering vivid lines not replicated in ...
Navalny app removed from Google and Apple stores as Russian elections begin
Navalny app removed from Google and Apple stores as Russian elections begin
Jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny’s ‘Smart Voting’ app disappeared from Apple and Google stores Friday as Russians began voting in a three-day ...
RSBA holds monthly lunch |  The business
RSBA holds monthly lunch | The business
Everyone also wished happy birthday to Maria Giordano Batistoni, a retired teacher and active community volunteer. Maria Bell, along with her nonprofit Be ...
Report: No Cover-up at Colorado Air Pollution Division
Report: No Cover-up at Colorado Air Pollution Division
They also alleged that health department division leaders ignored EPA regulations on modeling and permitting short-term pollutants from important Colorado ...
How To Use Oculus Quest 2 With Your PC Wirelessly
How To Use Oculus Quest 2 With Your PC Wirelessly
Since then, the developers at Virtual Desktop — and, more recently, Oculus itself — have both figured out how to stream the visual feed from your PC to your ...
Cassie Bittle:  News Owner and Community Voice |  Bakersfield Life
Cassie Bittle: News Owner and Community Voice | Bakersfield Life
One thing is certain, Bittle has a heart and passion for helping others. She started attending Bakersfield City Council meetings to help inspire change, and ...
How to update Death Stranding: Director’s Cut from PlayStation 4 to PlayStation 5
How to update Death Stranding: Director’s Cut from PlayStation 4 to PlayStation 5
So, instead, search for Death Stranding on the store and, if you have the PS4 version in your library, you’ll see the full price replaced with the reduced ...
Right now, the best-selling Sony PlayStation 5 games
Right now, the best-selling Sony PlayStation 5 games
Part of the problem, of course, was the global semiconductor shortage. But another big part of the equation is high demand. There are many interesting and ...
The iPhone 13 hashflag #AppleEvent is now available on Twitter
The iPhone 13 hashflag #AppleEvent is now available on Twitter
Continuing its use of Twitter’s custom icon feature, Apple’s latest hashflag consists of an Apple logo filled with a blue-to-pink pastel gradient reminiscent ...
NBA 2K22 The Drama Trade Rumors Bug Fix
NBA 2K22 The Drama Trade Rumors Bug Fix
As for an “official” solution, the best 2K have done so far is recommend reinstalling the game and / or clear your cache. So, that’s absolutely worth a shot ...
Show next
Compsmag - Latest News from tech, business and health
Logo