In the past couple of days, the military has increased its offensive against bandits in the northwest and northeast following the targeted attacks against family members of politicians and elites.
Recently, governors in the northwest, particularly the governor of Zamfara State, Bello Matawalle, have taken some drastic measures including the shutting down of mobile communications infrastructure, cancelling market days, banning the sale of petrol in cans and prohibiting phone charging spots.
These drastic measures coincided with the increase in attacks on the elites as some of the bandits became emboldened and operated in metropolitan areas including the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA).
To underscore the recent impact of the new dimension of insecurity, President Muhammadu Buhari gave a new directive to the Chief of Defence Staff, Service Chiefs, Inspector General of Police and other security forces.
This saw an increased ground and air offensive by the Nigerian Military, leaving scores of bandits fleeing their hideouts in their hundreds.
In the light of the recent onslaught, the governor of Zamfara State has begun to speak tough against the bandits, saying his administration was not ready to negotiate with criminals.
In this report, we take a look at the increase in the target against prominent people, and the latest onslaught by the government.
Here is a timeline of notable politicians and their relatives who have either been killed or kidnapped.
On the 1st of July, shortly after attending the defection rally of governor Matawalle, a member of the Zamfara State House of Assembly, Muhammed Ahmed was killed in Katsina State while he was taking his son to Kano to board a flight to Sudan.
The lawmaker, a few hours before his tragic end, attended the defection of his governor from the PDP to the All Progressives Congress (APC).
His son was fortunate to only sustain minor injuries and did not die from the attack.