Insecurity: Nigerian Military neutralizes 227, arrests 525 persons in one week

 

 

 

By ZAKAA LAZARUS-Abuja.

 

The Nigerian Military have neutralized 227 criminal elements and arrested 525 other persons in continuation of the on-going military operations to rid Nigeria of insurgency, kidnapping, banditry and other criminal activities in the last one week.

 

The troops also rescued 253 kidnapped hostages and arrested 11 perpetrators of oil theft in the South-South region, while also stopping the theft oil products estimated as the sum of N1,312,477,050.00.

 

The Director, Defence Media Operations (DMO), Major General Edward Buba revealed this Abuja on Thursday, further disclosed that the troops recovered 231 assorted weapons and 6,441 assorted ammunitions.

 

He gave the breakdown as the weapons as 89 AK47 rifles, 40 locally fabricated gun, 59 dane guns, 2 pump action guns, 8 locally fabricated pistols, 6 x 36 hand grenade, 3 IED, one RPG 7 tubes, one RPG 7 charger, 4 AGL rounds, one barrel of QJC Gun, one barrel of PKT with receiver, one barrel of Dushka Gun, 250kg bombs used by NATO and Eastern Bloc aircraft and one MRAP.

 

Others are: 4,198 rounds of 7.62mm special ammo, 841 rounds of 7.62mm NATO, 88 rounds of 5.56mm, 16 rounds of 7.62 x 39mm, 99 rounds of 7.62 x 51mm, 956 rounds of 7.62 x 54mm, 242 live cartridges, one PKM magazine, 24 magazines, 6 baofeng radios, 8 vehicles, 69 motorcycles, 66 mobile phones, 12 cutlasses and the sum of N1,630,000.00 only amongst other items.

 

Major-General Buba, who was briefing the media on the operational activities of the various theatres across the country, noted that during the period under review, troops in the Niger Delta area discovered and destroyed 18 dugout pits, 34 boats, 5 drums, 4 receiver, 4 reservoirs and 97 storage tanks. Other items recovered include 198 cooking ovens, 9 vehicles, 3 pumping machines, 2 speedboats, one outboard engine and 57 illegal refining sites. Troops recovered 1,442,700 litres of stolen crude oil and 154,650 litres of illegally refined AGO.

 

 

Commenting on the general military operations, Major-General Buba said: “troops re actively fighting in various theatres of Operation across the country and are focused on destroying both the military capability as well as the will to fight of the terrorist and their cohorts across the country.”

 

 

In this regard, he said, “troops are hunting senior terrorist leadership that are of operational importance in terms of coordination of the terrorist attacks against troops and citizens. Troops are also hunting those that of symbolic value including all those declared wanted.”

 

In particular, he said,”troops are in hunt of one, HALILU BUZU, a terrorist leader that hails from Buzu in Republic of Niger. He settled in Subbubu Forest and lives in Shinkafi LGA of Zamfara State. His camp and illegal gold mine are located at Kawayi in Anka LGA of Zamfara State, where he has a lot of boys working for him.

 

 

According to the Director, Halilu is also a prominent cattle rustler and illegal gold miner and that “last week, his boys killed 19 villagers at Farar Kasa. He is a High Value Target and therefore declared wanted. Meanwhile, he is one of several others that we would be declaring wanted.”

 

 

Continuing, Major-General Buba said: “Additionally, Halilu is a major arms supplier, trusted by arms dealers from supplying arms from Libya. When, troops close in on him, he moves across the border into Republic of Niger for refuge. At this time, we are through appropriate channels calling on the Nigerian authorities to apprehend and hold him accountable for his atrocities.

 

“These categories of terrorist are relentlessly targeted by troops, such that we will be able to strike them out and take them off the battlefield as soon as possible. It clear that the fate of the terrorist perpetrating insecurity in our nation will be violent and short. Troops will stop at nothing to take them out of the battlefield.

 

“Troops are fighting admirably in a very challenging complex combat environment and have made significant progress. However, there is still a lot of work ahead as there are still many more terrorist to kill, weapons to be recovered and many terrorist commanders and leaders to take off the battlefield.”

 

 

Concerning the just concluded visit of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry and his wife Lady Megan,” the Director said, “We were honored to receive the Duke and Duchess of Sussex to Nigeria.”

 

 

According to Buba “We applaud them in their mission of bringing awareness to those in need, especially for highlighting the issues of veterans and the need to address the challenges that face soldiers long after they have left the military.

 

 

“It is our duty to remain diligent and faithful to those who have and are serving our great nation and we thank the Duke of Sussex for continuing to shed light on these matters and bringing them to the fore. A veteran himself, the Duke of Sussex speaks not only from a place of compassion, but from hard earned experience.

 

 

“It remains our duty to continue serving these men and women who sacrifice so much for our country and we look forward to ongoing collaborations with the Duke on how to best achieve these goals.”

 

 

He expressed satisfaction that on the ground, “troops continue to demonstrate stamina, resolve and strong desire to remain focused and stay the course until the enduring defeat of the terrorist and their cohorts in order to diminish their ability to conduct acts of terror or harm citizens.”

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