138 Bandits Killed, 50 Victims Rescued In Two Months – Military

 

The Defence Headquarters has said that over 138 suspected bandits have been killed, while over 50 kidnapped victims were rescued by troops of Operation Hadarin Daji and the Joint Task Force Operation Thunder Strike between May to July 2019 in the Northwest part of the country.

Both operations were launched in May in a bid to tackle the spate of security challenges confronting some states in the North-Western part of the country.

At a briefing in Abuja to update journalists on the progress of the joint operation, the Director of Defence Information, Colonel Onyema Nwachukwu said that the troops also recovered firearms and ammunition during several mop-up operations carried out.

“Since inception, troops of OPHD have recorded strings of successes against the criminals, including a daring rescue operation in which troops neutralized 54 armed bandits in an encounter in fortified enclaves in Moriki, Madada and Dumburum forests in Zamfara state. Several assorted firearms were also recovered from the bandits.

“It will suffice to mention that in the last 2 months, since the commencement of the joint operations, the gallant troops of Operation HADARIN DAJI have in series of successful encounters rescued over 50 kidnapped victims and neutralized about 78 armed bandits from various fortified enclaves in Zamfara and contiguous states.

“The troops have also recovered a total of 39 firearms which include 16 AK 47 rifles, 1 Light Machine Gun, 14 Dane guns, 2 Pump-action rifles, 3 semi-automatic rifles, 3 pistols and 2,437 rounds of 7.62mm special ammunition.”

READ ALSO: 15 Reported Killed After Gunmen Attack Katsina Village

He added that over 25 suspected bandits have been arrested and are undergoing investigations.

Colonel Nwachukwu explained that the bandits used cattle rustling to fund their criminalities and the troops began anti-cattle rustling operation, which led to the interception of 2,278 cows.

“On the realization, that bandits were generating financial resources through cattle rustling to fund their criminality, troops of OPHD also embarked on anti-cattle rustling operations, which led to the interception and stalling of cattle rustling activities. This culminated in the recovery of 2,278 cows, which have been duly returned to their respective owners.

“The troops have also recovered a total of 39 firearms which include 16 AK 47 rifles, 1 Light Machine Gun, 14 Dane guns, 2 Pump-action rifles, 3 semi-automatic rifles, 3 pistols and 2,437 rounds of 7.62mm special ammunition.”

He also revealed that kidnappers, bandits, cattle rustlers along major highways and adjoining villages around Kaduna-Abuja axis were not spared, as troops identified flashpoints and arrested 14 suspected kidnappers and recovered arms and ammunition.

“These operations led to the successful interception and arrest of 14 suspected kidnappers, while 6 bandits were neutralized. In a unique occurrence, troops while on aggressive patrol along Abuja-Kaduna highway discovered a group of bandits dressed in military camouflage who would have been ordinarily perceived by unsuspecting members of the public as military personnel on routine checks along the highway mounted an illegal roadblock. The courageous troops moved tactically to the scene, engaged them in a firefight and neutralized the bandits.

“The troops have so far recovered a total of 38 firearms comprising, 11 AK 47 rifles, 1 Semi-automatic rifle, 1 Revolver Pistol, 23 Dane guns, 2 locally made pistols, 157 rounds of 7.62 mm Special ammunition, 8 cartridges, 2 AK 47 magazines, 5 Mobile phones, and 4 solar panels. “

Other recoveries made by the troops include “seven Motorcycles used by bandits and 695 cattle.

“The cows have been returned to their respective owners,” he added.

Banditry: DHQ Condemn Troops For Maltreating Arrested Suspects

boko haram

 

The Defence Headquarters (DHQ) has condemned the behaviour of troops of the AFN, captured in a trending video, who allegedly maltreated some suspected armed bandits and kidnappers arrested along the Abuja Kaduna highway, describing it as unprofessional.

According to a statement by the Acting Director, Defence information, Colonel Onyema Nwachukwu on Wednesday, the troops had acted in overzealousness in a desperate attempt to extract information from the suspected bandit.

The attention of the Defence Headquarters (DHQ) has been drawn to video footage trending in the social media, visually displaying the maltreatment of some suspected armed bandits and kidnappers who were arrested along Road Abuja Kaduna during a recent operation.

Apparently the troops had in their overzealousness tied one of the suspects to a stake in a desperate attempt to extract information from him.

READ ALSO: 16 Killed, 14 Injured As Suspected Bandits Attack Zamfara Community

The statement also explained that the act is in violation of the military code of conduct and the Chief of Defence Staff has ordered a thorough investigation into the incident.

The DHQ wishes to unambiguously state that the acts exhibited by the troops in the video footage is very unprofessional and an outright violation of the code of conduct handed down to guide the conduct and behaviour of troops of the AFN during operations.

The DHQ therefore, in very strong terms condemn this act of ineptitude and exhibition of lawlessness. The DHQ considers the conduct of the troops highly regrettable.

In order to promptly address the anomaly, the Chief of Defence Staff has ordered a thorough investigation into the incident to bring to book all those found culpable in accordance with the military justice system.

Exhibit More Diligence And Loyalty, Army Tells New Senior Officers

Nigerian Army officialsNewly decorated senior officers of the Eight Task Force Division of the Nigerian Army have been urged to exhibit more diligence, dedication and loyalty in their professional calling.

The General Officer commanding the division, Major General Ali Abdu Nani, who decorated senior officers of the division elevated in the recent promotion exercise conducted by the Nigerian Army, made the request.

Two senior officers, Colonels Francis Tunji Ojerinde and Tonye Thanks Numbere, who were elevated to the rank of Brigadier General, were decorated with their new badges of rank by the GOC and the Commander 48 Division Engineers, Major General Chukwuemeka Okonkwo respectively.

Two other senior officers Lieutenant Colonels Sebhil Adeyemo and Yunus Zubair, who were promoted to the higher rank of Colonel were equally decorated with their new ranks.

Addressing the newly promoted officers during the investiture ceremony, the General Officer Commanding urged all officers of the Division to renew and reinvigorate their zeal to put an end to the activities of insurgents in the fringes of border towns in northern Borno.

A statement by a spokesman for the Army, Colonel Onyema Nwachukwu, said General Nani further urged those who did not benefit from the recent promotions not to lose hope but rather rededicate themselves and shore up their productivity.

The General Officer Commanding Eight Task Force Division had just been promoted to the rank of Major General and was decorated at the Army Headquarters by the Chief of Army Staff Lieutenant General Tukur Yusuf Buratai.

Brigadier General Francis Ojerinde, who spoke on behalf of the newly promoted officers, showered encomium on the authorities of the Nigerian Army, adding that their promotion was a call to higher responsibilities which must be assiduously pursued.

The event was graced by all officers of the Division Headquarters.