- 155 bandits captured in Northwest in month of August
The Armed Forces of Nigeria on Thursday said that airstrikes by Nigerian Air Force fighter jets and helicopter gunships killed “no fewer than” 111 Boko Haram/Islamic State in West Africa Province (ISWAP) terrorists, including 15 of their high ranking commanders IN Northeast Nigeria. Also, 17 Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists were killed by troops of the Nigerian Army in the region.
The Armed Forces also said that its troops also killed 25 bandits and arrested 155 others and recovered 1,000 livestock in the Northwest region of the country.
Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, Major General John Enenche, also told journalists in Abuja that on 19 August 2020, Nigerian Navy Ship SOROH intercepted a speedboat with 13 foreigners including seven Russians and six Ukrainians allegedly kidnapped by pirates in Lome waters.
General Enenche said that the 13 kidnapped foreigners as well as four Nigerians on the speedboat were handed over to Nigeria’s Defence Intelligence Agency on 24 August “for further necessary action.”
Enenche told journalists at the Armed Forces Complex, Abuja while the strides of the military in the month of August 2020 that “the Land Component of Operation LAFIYA DOLE conducted offensives to several Boko Haram/ISWAP enclaves in Borno and Yobe States. These cumulatively led to the neutralization of 17 members of the BHT/ISWAP elements and several of them escaped with various degrees of gunshot wounds. More so, with superior firepower, the gallant troops repelled terrorists’ attacks on own troops’ locations and thwarted BHT/ISWAP attempts to interrupt the resettlement of Internally Displaced Persons to their communities in Borno State, which was flagged-off by the Executive Governor of the State. Troops recovered large cache of arms and ammunition as well as equipment during the operations and 4 abducted persons were also rescued. However, in one of the encounters, 3 of our own troops paid the supreme prize. In the meantime, other injured troops are recuperating at one of our medical facilities. Nonetheless, calm has been restored to the affected communities.
“Meanwhile, the comprehensive air strikes executed by the Air Task Force of Operation LAFIYA DOLE on terrorists’ enclaves at various locations, especially with the launching of Operation HAIL STORM, in the North East have yielded tangible results. The air strikes, which were conducted with a package of Nigerian Air Force fighter jets and helicopter gunships, cumulatively, killed no fewer than 111 BHT/ISWAP elements, including 15 of their high-ranking commanders, which include the ISWAP naval commander Abu Imraana, Mallam Abba and Mallam Ibrahim. This is in addition to several others neutralized in the devastating air bombardments directed at structures used by terrorists as hideouts and administrative headquarters as well as training camps. Several BHT/ISWAP elements’ camps used as logistics bases and harbors for their fighters and leaders were destroyed as well.”
The Defence Spokesperson noted that “troops of operation SAHEL SANITY deployed at Daki Takwas on 20 August 2020, conducted a snap road block and intercepted a Toyota Corolla car with Registration Number. DAL 41 MT. After a diligent search on the vehicle, troops discovered 11 locally made rifles and 150 live cartridges concealed in different parts of the vehicle. Preliminary investigation reveals that the dangerous cargo was heading to Kofar Dinya in Bukkuyum LGA of Zamfara State. A total of 5 men were arrested in connection to the illegal fire arms. Also, a repentant bandit leader named Bornon Kejo willingly surrendered to troops and submitted 2 AK-47 Rifles and 2 AK 47 Rifle magazines at Zurmi in Zurmi LGA of Zamfara State. Efforts are ongoing to recover more weapons as well as encourage others to surrender and embrace peace.
“In another development, troops on 23 August 2020 conducted a well-coordinated intelligence based operation leading to the raid of an illegal mining site located along Gadan Zaima – Zuru Road in Bukuyyum LGA of Zamfara State which also serves as bandits’ hideout. During the operation, 150 suspects were arrested and arms and ammunition were recovered. Preliminary investigation reveals that aside from sabotaging the nation’s economy, banditry is being financed through these illegal mining activities. Similarly, the gallant troops on fighting patrol encountered 3 bandits on motorcycles around Maigalma village in Anka LGA of Zamfara State while attempting to attack innocent residents. During the encounter, one of the bandits was neutralized while others escaped. Troops recovered one AK-47 Rifle, one AK 47 Rifle magazine loaded with 5 rounds of 7.62mm ammunition and two motorcycles from the fleeing bandits. This is in addition to the neutralization of not fewer than 20 armed bandits within the month of August in Katsina, Zamfara and Sokoto States.
In the Niger Delta region, Enenche noted that “cumulatively, a total of One Million, Three Hundred and Nine (1,309,000) litres of stolen Automotive Gas Oil (AGO), 1,824.04 barrels of stolen crude oil and Three Hundred and Two Thousand (302,000) litres of stolen Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) were recovered in the month of August 2020 in Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta and Rivers States. Additionally, a total of 344 bags of smuggled parboiled rice were impounded in the zone.”