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2. General Security


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    Tillabéri, Abala: "The area around the town is under the control of groups of armed bandits who rule like the state with their taxes."

    Ménaka, Inekar: "At the level of our commune, the security situation is very precarious, i.e., the population is often confronted with cattle theft, or very often with the imposition of zakat, theft, the threat of armed groups."

    Gao, Ansongo: "The situation is very serious, because there is no security in our area, it is pure laxity, given the kidnappings of people and the systematic theft of livestock in addition to the multiple attacks against the forces of order. In no way can we talk about security in our municipality. This situation is very dangerous, especially with the closure of schools, which can have repercussions on children, as others may have the intuition to join armed groups."

    Est, Fada: "In Fada it is true that there is not much of a problem with insecurity, but all around us there are attacks. And that is a bit scary to tell the truth. Another problem is the situation of internally displaced people who are walking around in our streets looking for food. Apart from the forester killed in sector 1, there have not yet been any major attacks here in the town of Fada. But the consequences of insecurity are still being felt here."

    Est, Kantchari: "Some of us have lost almost everything. We have lost brothers; our cattle have been stolen and our fields looted. We have never experienced such a life in our community before."


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    Tillabéri, Abala: "In my opinion, certain measures create insecurity. When I say this, I am referring to the extension of the state of emergency and the closure of rural markets, which have contributed to bringing down the local economy. Many people have been left without activities. To sell a goat, in some localities, you have to go 50 km to find a market. People are not living. And all this contributes to a new situation of insecurity."

    Ménaka, Tidermène: "The security situation in our municipality has deteriorated since the events of 2012, but it is important to point out that, in spite of everything, there has been a remarkable advance recently with the Ménaka sans arme initiative."

    Gao, Ansongo: "Well, at our level, the security situation here is very complicated, given everything that is happening in the area, and we can say that it is getting worse from one day to the next, such as the kidnapping of innocent people, the theft of livestock and vehicles, and the growing banditry that prevents us from earning our daily bread."

    Est, Kantchari: "In recent months the situation has improved since the introduction of volunteers. If they are supported, the situation will change a lot.”

    Est, Bogande: “Widows, orphans and IDPs are increasing by the day. (…) People are fleeing their hamlets to come here without any means. Basically, we must conclude that given the immensity of the challenges, the means of solution remain minimal.”


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    Tillabéri, Gotheye: "The disagreements and rivalries between religious groups are a real threat to our community. If a solution is not found for this, it will certainly lead to serious conflicts.”

    Est, Diabo: "The main subjects of disagreement between the different groups present in our municipality, the conflicts of the plots of land in the commune between the natives and the foreigners, there are also the problems of ethnocentrism or the ethnic discrimination between the natives and the foreigners to what I could notice these conflicts which are frequent in this commune." 

    Est, Bogande: "Another phenomenon that is very recurrent here is the abduction of young girls at an early age by young boys who do not have the means to follow the process of commitment to traditional marriage until marriage. Also, we receive very regularly, the parents of these girls who come here to demand the return of their daughter at home."

    Est, Kantchari: "Certain ethnic groups are victims of this (suspicions) under the pretext that they are responsible for what is happening to the community, yet deeper investigations sometimes show the opposite.” 

    Centre-Nord, Kaya: “With the massive displacement of certain populations […], if this is not taken care of, it could create a serious problem in the coming years. […] The consequence is also that the hosts who received the displaced are being neglected, which risks creating a conflict."


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    Tillabéri, Gotheye: "In my opinion, it is food insecurity that is the most damaging event for our commune. Successive bad harvests have impoverished people. People have sold all their animals and goods to support their families."

    Tillabéri, Ayerou: "The real threat comes from armed groups who kill, abduct and abuse traditional and religious authorities. They make them collect taxes on livestock to the great dismay of the people."

    Tillabéri, Bankilare: "There is also the levying of zakat on both people and livestock. And, whoever refuses to pay the zakat either the bandits take away all his animals or they kill him."

    Ménaka, Tidermene: "The control of the area by terrorists and the imposition of zakat are the greatest threats to our region in general and our commune in particular.

    Gao, Soni Aliber: "The biggest damaging event for our municipality is the kidnapping of animals and the payment of zakat, which has become an ever-growing phenomenon. These animals are considered the savings of the population."

    Est, Gayeri: "What I consider a big crisis is the bad rainy season last year, because the harvests were not good in the locality and this led to a food problem among the people.” 

    Sahel, Djibo: "The biggest crisis that prevents us from flourishing is obviously terrorism, even going 5 to 10 kilometres is a problem. This inevitably leads to other crises, such as economic and food crises, which are very frequent. If it's not the day of the market, there is no trade. Poverty is growing day by day."

    Sahel, Sampelga: "In the last five years, the major crises my family has faced are the security situation due to terrorist attacks and the health crisis related to the corona virus. The one that has had the greatest impact on my community is obviously terrorism, because in addition to the fact that we are constantly on the alert with a feeling of fear because no one is safe, there is the fact that our activities are slowing down, creating a situation of scarcity of food and non-food items."

    Centre-Nord, Pissila: "The biggest crisis is the one you know, the security crisis. Add to this the coronavirus disease. These two crises have completely overwhelmed our community”.


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    Tillabéri, Bankilare: " What we observe today is above all the weakness or even absence of the state, characterised by the poor responsiveness of the security and defense forces. (...) The presence of the military is certainly reinforced, but this does not prevent schools from being closed and community leaders from being assassinated every day. And this is what makes the population really disappointed and pessimistic today."

    Tillabéri, Abala: "One of the difficulties is the lack of responsiveness of the security and defense forces when they receive information about attacks or the presence of bandits in a given locality. Even if the information is well verified, the security and defense forces often do not react or are slow to react, especially at night."

    Tillabéri, Ayerou: "We live badly, we sleep badly, that is why I plead for us to tend towards self-defence. All the more so because the state can no longer guarantee our security and the security of our property. The response proposed by the government through the defence and security forces is insufficient."

    Tillabéri, Bankilaré: "I have noticed that people in Bankilaré prefer to go to the gendarmerie for any conflict they have, even for small marital problems between spouses. In any case, this is the trend I have observed. And, generally speaking, people accept the decisions of the gendarmerie. In case of opposition, they naturally go to the court of justice in Téra, since Bankilaré does not yet have a court. Given the distance and the resources required, people prefer to reach an agreement at local level.

    Ménaka, Anderamboukane: “The security of a country is not a question of armed groups, whether or not they are signatories to the peace agreement. The security of a country is its army, its police, its gendarmerie, and its justice system. But as long as security is in the hands of armed groups or armed militias, we will never succeed”

    Est, Gayeri: "There is the installation of a military base. At each moment they make patrols to really ensure our protection, we really thank them for that.  But until now, no one can move 10km from the commune without danger and the displaced cannot reach their respective villages.”

    Sahel, Bani: "Security actions are coordinated by the defence and security forces, who do a remarkable job of maintaining and improving security in the region."

    Sahel, Sampelga: "Sampelga is a small municipality, we were warned by the terrorists not to call on the defence and security forces, because they will know and come to settle our account. Even the gendarmerie is just an empty building."

    Sahel, Kongoussi: "Since the beginning of the crisis and even before, the forces of law and order (gendarmerie, national police) and the koglweogo have been carrying out patrols in order to dissuade all those who try to sow disorder in the community. I am talking about bandits and others. Nowadays, these measures have been reinforced because in addition to the forces, there is the presence of volunteers. These volunteers ensure surveillance and security in the villages, while the security and defense forces are more present in the towns and on the main roads and coordinate with these volunteers. It should also be noted that both the security and defense and the volunteers are scouring the mountains and hills in search of terrorists. All these actions help to ensure the peace of mind of the population."


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    Tillabéri, Bankilare: "At the level of the tribes and hamlets there are village vigilance committees whose members are chosen discreetly and equipped with mobile phones, offered by the HACP, to enable them to report information in real time. The village committees operate in total discretion so as not to expose them."

    Ménaka, Anderamboukane: "Security even in the city is absent. These people I see cannot provide security (the armed men of the MSA) if they don't have support. On the contrary, they will expose the city. They are very young and they are not trained either for defense or for the protection of people and their property.”

    Ménaka, Anderamboukane: “There are two MSA checkpoints at the entrance and exit of the city, and this is just to ensure their daily bread, since each vehicle that enters or leaves pays the sum of two thousand francs, which allows them to earn a daily income.”  

    Ménaka, Tidermene: "Over the last five years, we have experienced a conflict between the self-defence groups and the CMA, which has been very damaging to our community.”

    Est, Bogande: "Organised crime is clearly decreasing, thanks to the dynamism of the Koglweogo and VDP."

    Est, Fada: "The event that has improved the community the most in recent years is the creation of self-defence groups that have fought against organised crime. The provisions made are the material accompaniment and blessing of these self-defence groups in the exercise of their function. Our approach was to encourage them to work impartially, legitimately and without distinction of ethnicity.” 

    Sahel, Mané: "It is obvious that thanks to the presence of the Koglweogos, the phenomenon of robbery and banditry has diminished considerably, but you never know when it will get out of hand and they will no longer be able to cope. "

    Sahel, Boulsa:"The fact that the security agents had captured the Kogleweogo chief was a real struggle. The population mobilized itself to go to the gendarmerie to show their bad mood. We asked for the support of the traditional chiefs and they were in solidarity with us because they are the ones who protect our property and settle certain disputes. They went to see the security officials and that is how the latter was released.”