Army Flags Off ‘Exercise Sahel Sanity’

 

The Nigerian Army has flagged off ‘Exercise Sahel Sanity’ to mitigate the current spate of banditry, kidnapping, cattle rustling and other related crimes bedeviling Katsina, Zamfara, Sokoto, Kaduna and Niger states.

Launched in Faskari, one of the front line LGAs of Katsina state, the exercise which is aimed at restoring peace in the regions is expected to metamorphose into real time operation.

Speaking during the official flag off of ceremony on Monday, the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai announced that the exercise is carefully designed to plush out armed bandits, terrorist groups and other criminal elements hibernating in the forests of Dumburum, Gando, Subobo and Kagara in Katsina, Zamfara and parts of Sokoto states.

Insecurity: Nigerian Army Asks Katsina Residents To Provide More Information

Army Speaks About Recent Attacks On Military Bases In North East
A file photo of troops. Source: [email protected]

 

The Nigerian Army is soliciting for more support from the good people of Katsina state especially in the areas of information gathering and sharing.

This is to strengthen its intelligence network in combatting banditry and other related crimes rocking not only Katsina in particular but the entire North West Region.

The Chief of Army Staff, represented by the General Officer Commanding 3 Division of the Nigerian Army, Major General Nuhu Angbazo made the request on Saturday during the Nigerian Army Covid-19 palliatives distribution exercise held in Faskari, one of the front line Local Government Areas of the state.

According to him, the Nigerian Army has ensured that it pays very close attention to the non-kinetic aspect of its military operations.

He said that the Army has enjoyed the support and cooperation of the good people of Katsina, Kaduna, Zamfara, Sokoto, Kebbi, and Niger states towards surmounting the challenges of insecurity not only in these states but the country at large.

Over 500 persons mostly Internally Displaced in Faskari Local Government Area have so far benefited from the palliatives meant to assist vulnerable Nigerians.

Meanwhile, a similar exercise is currently taking place in the 36 states of the Federation and the FCT.

The measure is part of efforts to improve on the existing cordial relationship and in line with the efforts of the Federal Government in cushioning the effect of COVID-19 pandemic ravaging the globe.

Two of the beneficiaries interviewed by Channels Television expressed gratitude to the Nigerian Army for the gesture demanding more military efforts in the fight against Banditry and other related crimes in their separate communities so as to go back to their normal life.

Army Vows To Track And Destroy BHT/ISWAP Terrorists, Bandits

 

The Nigerian Army says it is deeply saddened by the unfortunate incident in which suspected retreating Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists with a few sleeper cells within communities ambushed and killed innocent women and children in Faduma Koloram village, Gubio LGA of Borno State.

In a communique by its spokesman, Colonel Sagir Musa, the army revealed that already a large contingent of military personnel have been drafted in the general area to track and apprehend or neutralize the perpetrators.

Colonel Musa’s statement further noted that the Theatre Command, Operation LAFIYA DOLE has been mandated to enhance security, dominate the area and reassure the affected communities of the Nigerian Army’s commitment to protect the population.

READ ALSO: Borno Village Attack: Death Toll Rises To 81, Seven Kidnapped

In a similar vein, the army said it is not unaware of the banditry incidents recorded in Katsina, Sokoto and Zamfara States, adding that it has obtained intelligence which suggest that some bandits are shifting base and venting their anger on hapless citizens because of the ongoing operations in Katsina State.

The army also stated that while it sympathizes with fellow Nigerians and the good people of Borno, Katsina, Sokoto and Zamfara States in particular, on the unfortunate incidents, it would like to assure all Nigerians of its unrelenting efforts in engaging with communities to rid the society of any and all remnants of the criminal elements.

“We would like to state further that the Nigerian Army in conjunction with the Nigerian Air Force, sister service, other security agencies and the affected States governments, will make efforts to clear all known bandits hideouts in those states as more troops are being mobilized as directed by Mr President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces.

“We would also like to assure that these types of heinous crimes will not go unpunished and will not be allowed anywhere in our country,” the communique stated in parts.

Through its spokesman, the army reiterate that it is committed to investigating the circumstances of the callous attacks by desperate Boko Haram criminals and the bandits on innocent civilians.

The army further stated that it would ensure that appropriate action is taken to mitigate against any future incidents.

While thanking Nigerians for their understanding, the army implored all to continue to support and cooperate with the troops as they carry out their duties.

Troops Kill Escaping Insurgents, Arrest High Profile Informants

 

The ongoing subsidiary operation in the North East Theatre of Operation codenamed ‘Operation KANTANA JIMLAN’ being conducted as part of the conclusive phase of Operation LAFIYA DOLE tends already to be recording monumental successes.

The operation which is being conducted preparatory to the final routing of Boko Haram Terroritsts (BHT) and ISWAP criminals from the Nigeria by the troops of Operation LAFIYA DOLE and coordinated by the Chief of Army Staff Lieutenant General Tukur Yusuf Buratai has intensified on various fronts especially within the Timbuktu triangle, leaving the criminal elements and their leadership in complete disarray and thus setting the conditions for the commencement of the final assault on their evil enclaves and hideouts.

READ ALSO: 27 Police Personnel On COVID-19 Duty Have Been Assaulted – IGP

In a communique on Monday, Major General John Enenche who is coordinator of Defence Media Operations at the Defence Headquarters, noted that some escaping insurgents recently met their deaths after encountering gallant troops of the army.

Major General Enenche stated that “several BHT/ISWAP targets were acquired and engaged with precision by Nigerian Army Artillery Regiments of Operation LAFIYA DOLE across the entire Theatre thus delivering accurate fire on the criminals who were seen fleeing in disarray.

“In one of such coordinated artillery bombardments conducted between 1st and 2nd May, 2020 around the Timbuktu Triangle general area by the Offensive Support Group of Operation KANTANA JIMLAN, 7 Boko Haram Gun Trucks were destroyed while 78 BHT/ISWAP fighters were killed as confirmed by both aerial and human intelligence.”

Meanwhile, within the same period, another successful artillery engagement to Buk in Damboa LGA of Borno State resulted in the killing of an additional 56 Boko Haram Terrorists.

It was gathered that acting on intelligence that a large number of BHT members were converging at the location which they erroneously considered as being safe from aerial bombardment, the gallant troops of the Nigerian Army Artillery Regiments acquired and engaged the location with deadly precision, inflicting heavy casualties on them.

According to the Defense Headquarters, only a handful of the terrorists escaped the location with gun shot wounds, with little chances of survival.

In a related development, 16 high profile Boko Haram informants are said to have fallen into the troops’ dragnet within the last 2 weeks.

“The arrest of such high profile BHT informants significantly dislocated the criminals’ information and supply chains and equally dislocating their communication”, notes Major General Enenche who believes that as the gallant troops continue to overwhelm the criminal elements on all fronts, it is quite apparent that the days of the Boko Haram sect are indeed numbered.

Meanwhile, the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Yusuf Buratai who has been in the Theatre with the troops for the past 5 weeks congratulated the gallant troops for their resilience, courage and dedication to the noble cause of defending the nation against the criminal elements.

He further urged them to remain focused and ruthless as they take the fight to the fleeing remnants of the enemies of the nation.

Troops Subdue Boko Haram/ISWAP Terrorists In Geidam, Yobe

 

 

Troops of the Nigerian Army’s Operation Lafiya Dole have again overpowered the Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists who were attempting to attack Geidam in Yobe State on Monday afternoon.

This development is coming less than 48 hours after the troops dealt another deadly blow to the terrorists killing over 100 of them in Buni Gari in Gujba Local Government Area of the State.

A feat which is part of renewed efforts by the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai, to oust the terrorist once and for all.

This latest operation was carried out by the troops of 159 Battalion in Sector 2 in conjunction with the Air Task Force of OPLD who swiftly intercepted and engaged the insurgents in a fierce exchange of fire.

According to a statement by the army, the terrorists were forced to retreat into different locations in the bushes while troops continued in pursuit of the fleeing terrorists.

Thirteen terrorists were killed, two gun trucks with DUSHKHA Guns and Six (6) AK 47 rifles were Captured.

The army in its communique noted that at present, the terrorists have been subdued and the situation in Geidam town and environs has been normalized and troops are currently on a follow up/exploitation operation.

READ ALSO: Abba Kyari: Buhari Thanks Nigerians, Commends Adherence To NCDC Directives

Below is a full statement by the Nigerian Army.

TROOPS OF OPERATION LAFIYA DOLE SUBDUE BOKO HARAM /ISWAP TERRORISTS ATTEMPT TO ATTACK GEIDAM IN YOBE STATE

1. Some Elements of Boko Haram/ISWAP Terrorists at about 1130 hours on Monday, 20 April 2020 attempted to attack Geidam town, the Headquarters of Geidam Local Government Area of Yobe State. Troops of 159 Battalion in Sector 2 in conjunction with the Air Task Force of Operation LAFIYA DOLE swiftly intercepted and engaged the criminals in a fierce exchange of fire.

2. Consequently, the terrorists were forced to retreat, scampered in disarray into different locations and within surrounding bushes. At the moment, troops are on pursuit of the fleeing terrorists.

3. During the encounter thirteen (13) terrorists were neutralized, two (2) gun trucks with DUSHKHA Guns and Six (6) AK 47 rifles were Captured. Presently, the terrorists have been subdued, situation in Geidam town and environs has been normalized and troops are currently on a follow up/exploitation operation.

4. There was no casualty or loss of equipment on the part of our gallant troops. Additional details to be communicated to the media as events unfold further.

You are please requested to disseminate the information through your medium to the general public. Thank you for your usual support and cooperation.

JOHN ENENCHE
Major General
Coordinator
Defence Media Operations
Defence Headquarters
20 April 2020

Army Chief Of Staff, Buratai Relocates To North East

A file photo of the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai.

 

The Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt Gen TY Buratai, has relocated fully to the North East where he is overseeing and directing the overall operations in the theatre and other Nigerian Army operations across the country.

This was disclosed in a statement signed by the Acting Director, Army Public Relations, Colonel Sagir Musa.

According to the statement, Buratai, while addressing troops of the Special Super Camp Ngamdu in Kaga Local Government Area of Borno State on the 9th April, assured them that he will be with them in the nooks and crannies of the theatre.

Prior to his relocation, the COAS had been on operational tour to troops’ locations in the North East Theatre of Operation since Saturday the 4th of April.

During the tour, he was at the Army Super Camp 1 at Mulai and the Special Forces Super Camp 12 at Chabbol near Maiduguri on Wednesday, April 8, where he interacted with the officers and addressed the troops respectively.

The COAS was also at the Forward Operations Base at Alau Dam, and also personally led the troops on patrol round Mairimari and Maigilari Forests.

Meanwhile, the Army has assured Nigerians that it is highly committed to protecting all law-abiding citizens and defending the territorial integrity of the nation.

Operation Positive Identification: Court Fixes May 15 For Verdict

 

The Federal High Court in Lagos has fixed May 15 to give its verdict on a suit instituted by human rights lawyer, Femi Falana, over planned implementation of the “Operation Positive Identification’ by the Nigerian Army.

Justice Rilwan Aikawa fixed the date after listening to arguments from the lawyers representing all the parties in the suit.

Falana, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), had filed the Fundamental Rights Enforcement suit on October 25, 2019, against the planned exercise by the army scheduled to hold from November 1 to December 23.

Alongside the Nigerian Army, Mr Falana listed the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai; and the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, as the respondents to the suit.

The senior lawyer in his suit asked the court to stop the implementation of the exercise, arguing that the operation – which would entail Nigerians to move around with a valid means of identification such as the National Identification Card, Voters Registration Card, Drivers’ Licence and passports or other valid official identification – is unconstitutional, illegal, null and void.

READ ALSO: South-South Governors To Establish Regional Security Network

Citing several authorities, Mr Falana submitted that armed troops are not allowed by law to mount checkpoints on highways in the country. He says this is a job for the police and the respondents have not shown why the soldiers must take over the duties of the police.

He also submitted that the Appeal Courts have ruled severally that the army has no business in civil actions neither are they allowed to get involved in elections.

He argued that the relief sought pertains to his right to life, liberty, and freedom of movement as there was a likelihood that the soldiers could shoot to death any individual who failed to produce any means of identification on demand.

While asking the court to grant his fundamental rights application, Falana insisted that his move was completely anchored on Chapter 4 of the 1999 Constitution.

But the three respondents to the suit filed a preliminary objection challenging the suit.

In her arguments on the preliminary objection today, Counsel to the Nigerian Army and the Chief of Army Staff, Mrs Olayemi Badewole asked the court to dismiss the suit for lack of merit.

She argued that Mr Falana’s complaints are all based on Newspaper publications which are speculative. She further stressed that the reliefs sought are spent as the time-lapse for the nationwide operation had since elapsed and the case had become academic. She urged the court to dismiss the suit for lack of merit.

Counsel to the AGF, Mr Terhember Agbe, on his part, asked the court to take judicial notice of the insurgency in the country and the call for the sack of the Service Chiefs.

He stressed that operation positive identification had been going on in the North East and was a means by the army to fish out criminals and stop the breach of peace.

He claimed that the move to extend the exercise to other parts of the country was not aimed at shooting Nigerians or infringing on the fundamental human rights as guaranteed in the nation’s constitution.

Agbe also submitted that no evidence had been placed before the court to show that Operation Positive Identification has caused the death of any Nigerian.

He, therefore, urged the court not to give in to Mr Falana’s fear, a fear which he says is not founded in law and is not in the public interest.

After listening to all the arguments, the court fixed May 15 for its verdict.

Residents Flee As Boko Haram, Troops Exchange Gunfire In Borno

Air Force Officer Dismissed For Raping 14-Year-Old IDP

 

Residents of Damboa local government area of Borno State were on Wednesday morning, caught in a crossfire between the Nigerian Army and Boko Haram insurgents.

The insurgents attempted to attack a military location in Damboa, shooting sporadically but were countered with stiff resistance as troops on the ground responded with superior firepower.

READ ALSO: Court Orders Oshiomhole To Stop Parading Himself As APC Chairman

According to sources, the attack and the exchange of fire caused panic among the civilian populace leading to injury as some of those who ran were caught up in the crossfire.

The sources could not confirm the casualty figure but said the Army reportedly inflicted the insurgents with heavy casualties.

The exchange lasted for an hour until the insurgents retreated towards the Sambisa forest axis which is just on the fringes of Damboa local government.

Calm has returned to the town.

At Least 30 Killed As Gunmen Attack Kaduna Villages

A map showing Kaduna, a state in Nigeria's North-Central region.
A map showing Kaduna, a state in Nigeria’s North-Central region.

 

At least 30 people have been killed while several others injured as gunmen suspected to be bandits attacked some villages in Igabi and Giwa local government areas of Kaduna State.

The affected villages are Kerawa, Rago, Marina, Zariyawa, Hashimawa, Gidan Musa Saidu, and Unguwar Barau.

Although the police authorities and Kaduna state government are yet to confirm the attack, an indigene of Giwa local government told Channels Television that Troops of the Nigerian Army and Air Force launched offensive attacks against the bandits and in the process, killed many of them.

READ ALSO: PHOTOS: Catholics In Nigeria March Against Incessant Killings, Kidnappings

Sources also said that the bandits launched the attacks in what seems like revenge against the villagers who they accused of providing information to security agencies which resulted in the killing of their members.

As at the time of filing this report, the military is still carrying out offensive attacks on camps occupied by the bandits inside the thick forests within Giwa, Birnin Gwari and Igabi local government areas.

Soldier Opens Fire On Colleagues, Kills Four And Commits Suicide

 

A Corporal of the Nigerian Army serving at the Theatre Command Operation LAFIYA DOLE, Army Super Camp 15, located at Malam Fatori went berserk in early hours of 26 February 2020 and opened fire killing 4 of his colleagues before shooting himself.

According to a statement by Sagir Musa, Colonel Acting Director of Army Public Relations, two other colleagues were also injured during the incident and are currently in stable condition in our hospital in Maiduguri.

READ ALSO: Police Arrest Suspect In Connection With Murder Of AEDC Official

Colonel Musa said efforts are ongoing to contact the families of our gallant colleagues who paid the supreme price in the line of duty. May their gentle souls Rest In Peace.

Meanwhile, an investigation into the case has since been instituted to determine the circumstances that led to the unfortunate incident.

Nigerian Army Confirms Killing Of Four Soldiers In Bayelsa

 

The Nigerian Army has confirmed the killing of four soldiers by gunmen in Letugene, Ekeremor Local Government Area of Bayelsa State.

This was disclosed in a statement on Wednesday by the spokesperson of Operation Delta Safe, Major Victor Olukoya.

The army explained that troops were on their routine duty in the area when they were ambushed by the gunmen on Sunday, February 16th leading to the death of the soldiers.

READ ALSO: Identity Of Youth Who Jumped From 3rd Mainland Bridge Confirmed

“Troops while carrying out their routine duty within its area of responsibility on Sunday 16 February 2020 at about 6:00 p.m. were ambushed by gunmen and killed.

“Four soldiers were killed in action. However, an investigation is ongoing to ascertain the person’s or groups behind the attack,” the statement read in part.

The army in the statement also denied online reports claiming that the troops invaded the community following the attack and killing of the soldiers.

“It is important to state here that contrary to an online report; the men of OPDS did not invade any community in Ekeremor LGA of Bayelsa state as a result of the incident.

“Please be informed that the Nigerian Military is an organised and disciplined force and all its operations are guided by codes of conduct and rules of engagement.”

It explained further that the Commander Operation Delta Safe along with the Commander 16 Brigade and Commander Sector 2, embarked on an operational visit to Letugene, and some other communities in the local government area after the incident and observed that the areas were peaceful.

Auno Killing: Army’s Failure Led To Death Of 30 Travellers, Says Lawmaker

 

The lawmaker representing Chibok, Damboa and Gwoza, Ahmahdu Usman Jaha, has accused the Nigerian Army of negligence and complacency in securing the country.

According to Jaha, it was the failure on their path to carry out their duties that led to the killing of 30 persons in Auno, Borno State.

“Failure or inability on the part of the Nigerian Army to have a constructive listening of intelligence gathering from the DSS and other relevant informants in the community led to this attack,” he said on Wednesday at the floor of the House.

He further stated that despite receiving fillers that there was a potential attack and some of the insurgents had been sighted hours before the attack, “nobody cared to do anything”.

Jaha said the situation was a national issue and if he could give his life for peace to be restored in the northeast, he would do so, as he cannot bear to watch the continued tragedy.


RELATED

Buhari Returns To Nigeria, Pays Condolence Visit To Maiduguri

Reps Ask FG To Declare Emergency On Security


“I’ve said without fear of any contradiction that I am ready to give out my life if those in the northeast can live in peace,” he said.

“The most painful thing on earth is for you to stay in your comfort zone while your constituents are dying like animals.

“So, Mr Speaker, as far as I’m concerned, this is a national issue. It happened today in Borno but only God knows where next it will happen in the 36 states of the federation because of negligence or complacency on the part of our security operatives”.