As part of efforts to face the terrorism challenges facing the country, the Nigerian Army has organized a training competition in weapon handling, combat swimming, map reading and physical fitness.
The 3-day training competition which involves 165 warrant officers and senior non-commissioned officers from five divisions is also aimed at transforming the army into a force, better able to meet contemporary challenges.
According to the General Officer Commanding, 2 division Ibadan, General Abubakar Jibrin, the training competition will afford the soldiers the opportunity of preparing to face current challenges facing the country, especially terrorism.
The officers will take part in arms handling, map reading, courage and stamina building to further equip them as agents of the Federal Government and motivate them on the need to defend the nation’s territorial integrity.
The annual training competition is taking place at the Sobi Cantonment Ilorin, of the 22 Armoured Brigade.
Officers of the Joint Military Task Force (JTF) in Borno state, shot dead 16 suspected militants in a gun duel with Islamist sect Boko Haram on Tuesday, the military said.
“Some suspected Boko Haram terrorists attempted to open fire on (security) operatives but could not succeed. We have so far shot dead 16 of the terrorists during a shoot-out,” field operations officer for the state, Colonel Victor Ebhaleme, told Reuters news agency.
He also confirmed that the JTF officers had seized weapons and ammunition from the suspects and destroyed some of their home-made bombs in controlled explosions.
“We were able to achieve this feat based on information from the public,” he said. “There were no casualties on our side”.
There was no immediate comment from Boko Haram.
The sect claimed responsibility for a suicide car bombing of a Church in Bauchi state on Sunday, which killed at least 12 people, continuing a growing pattern of attacks on Christian worshippers.
Several attempts to end the sect’s insurgency militarily have failed. Although officials say they have been weakened in recent months by the killing and arrest of some senior commanders, they remain capable of lethal attacks.
Meanwhile, gunmen shot dead a retired police officer, his driver and two aides in the city of Kano on Tuesday.