Aminu Masari, governor of Katsina, says many people in the state do no see coronavirus as a problem but banditry.
Speaking on Thursday when he received Leo Irabor, chief of defence training and operations, and other senior officers from the defence headquarters, Abuja, Masari said banditry in the state has become overwhelming.
Katsina currently has 95 confirmed cases of the disease.
Masari said suspected bandits have killed more than 50 people in two weeks, while the residents continue to live in fear.
“We sincerely appreciate the efforts of the security agencies in the fight against banditry, but we must also state that the situation has become so overwhelming. We are running out of words to convince our people that we are on top of the situation,” the governor said.
“They are, by the days, loosing confidence in us as their leaders, saddled with the responsibility of securing their lives and properties.
“I am so saddened with the situation we are in now, because to most of our people in the troubled areas, COVID-19 is not even an issue.
“It may have taken over the world and the news about it, but not here. Attacks by armed bandits have have become a daily affair. In about 2 weeks, we have lost more than 50 people. At our own end and within the resources available, we have provided support to the security agencies.
“We even brokered peace through an Amnesty and reconciliatory drive. Some of the bandits repented and joined us in the fight, they were however overpowered by the unrepentant ones who are more sophisticated.
“I am using this opportunity to inform the defense headquarters that our people have started mooting the idea of taking up arms against the bandits no matter the consequences. We are doing our best to stop them and assure them that our security agencies are on top of the situation.”