1,071 persons were killed in crime-related cases across the country in the first quarter of 2019, the acting Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, has said.
Adamu said the crime statistics showed that between January and April, at least 685 persons were kidnapped across the country.
Adamu made this known during the quarterly Northern Traditional Rulers’ Council meeting held on Tuesday in Kaduna.
The Police boss added that 767 of the persons killed were from the North.
Giving a further breakdown of the deaths, Adamu said the North-West topped the death list with 436; North-Central came second with 250; while the South-South geopolitical zone recorded 130 deaths during the period under review.
He added that Zamfara State with 203 murder cases topped the national prevalence rate, Kaduna State followed closely with 112 reported cases while 90 people were killed in Benue State.
According to him, most of the murder cases recorded in the North are linked to banditry and communal violence.
In relation to banditry, he said, a total of 175 deaths were reported between January and April this year with Zamfara State topping the list with 104 reported cases, followed by Katsina State with 21 killed by bandits and Sokoto State with 19 cases.
On kidnappings, the IGP said 546 or 79.8 percent of the national total were recorded in the three northern geopolitical zones.
He said the highest zonal prevalence rate occurred in the North-West where 365 persons were reportedly kidnapped within the period under review.
“This is followed by the North-Central geopolitical zone where 145 persons were kidnapped.
“It is pertinent to mention that Zamfara State has the highest national kidnap rate with 281 victims in what has been directly linked to the activities of bandits in the state.
“This is followed by Kogi and Niger states where 65 and 51 persons, respectively were kidnapped within the period,” the IG added.
On armed robbery, Adamu disclosed that a total of 212 major armed robbery cases were reported nationally within the period under review.
Adamu further said the North with 130 major robbery cases representing 59.43 percent of the national total incident rate topped the list of armed robbery profile.
“The North-Central geopolitical zone with a total of 81 armed robbery cases represents the zone with the highest rate while Niger State, the FCT and Zamfara State with 32, 23 and 18 cases, respectively occupy the three topmost states in the national armed robbery profile,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammed Sa’ad Abubakar III, said the monarchs in the North should not be blamed for the sundry cases of kidnapping, banditry and armed robbery.