Kidnapped policemen: Troops rescue 20 abducted by Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists
Following a counter operation by troops of the Nigerian Army against invading Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists who stormed the Police station in Buni Yadi in Yobe state and abducted 20 Police officers last Friday, troops of Operation Hadin Kai have rescued all the 20 police personnel.
This is just as a total of 91 terrorists, bandits and kidnappers met their waterloo during several offensives against them at Kala Balge, Rann, Dikwa and Biu in Borno state and Gombi in Adamawa state, Zamfara state.
Acting Director, Defence Media Operations, Brig-Gen Bernard Onyeuko who made this known in Abuja, however, regretted that some gallant officers and soldiers were killed during the offensives.
Speaking on military operations against criminal elements, Onyeuko said, “On 3 December 2021, the troop’s repelled BHT/ISWAP terrorists’ attack in a fierce gun battle in Kala Balge LGA of Borno State. During the encounter, troops subdued the terrorist elements with superior firepower and neutralized no fewer than 26 of them.
“Troops also destroyed as well as captured several fighting equipment and vehicles of the terrorists. Regrettably, our gallant officers and soldiers paid the supreme prize. They are our heroes in the battle against terrorism. Other locations are; Gombi LGA of Adamawa State as well as Rann/Rumirgo villages and Biu, Bama, Mafa and Dikwa LGAs of Borno State where some terrorists surrendered to own troops.
“Cumulatively, a total 62 terrorist elements were neutralized and 28 of them were arrested, while 54 assorted arms and 144 rounds of the different calibre of ammunition were recovered.
“Also, a total of 101 rustled livestock were recovered and 20 kidnapped NPF personnel, who were abducted when the terrorists attacked the Police Division, were rescued by own troops at Buni Yadi within the period.
“Additionally, a total of 192 terrorists and their families comprising 51 adult males, 67 adult females and 74 children surrounded to own troops within the period. The surrendered terrorists were properly profiled and handed over to appropriate authorities for necessary actions.
Continuing Onyeuko said, “Troops of Operation Hadarin Daji on 2 December 2021, in a coordinated clearance operation carried out at Ruwan Dawa, Garin Maza and Marke Yamma villages in Tsafe LGA of Zamfara State, neutralized several armed bandits while arms and ammunition recovered.
“Other locations in which troops’ operational efforts yielded significant results are; Kungumi, Jangeme, Ungwuwar Dodo and along Dogo Karfe – Kaura Namoda road, all in Zamfara State.
Furthermore, other locations include; Kuzari village in Sabon Birni LGA of Sokoto State; Unguwan Dudu, Gwanki, Koluwe, Birane, Arne Maigiya and Danbok villages as well as along Magami – Kango Marafa road in Maru LGA of Zamfara State.
“Cumulatively, 14 armed bandits were neutralized, 4 of them were arrested and their collaborators. Also, 17 assorted arms, including AK-47 rifles, PKT machine guns and GPMGs as well as 625 rounds of different calibres of ammunition and 43 rustled livestock were recovered; while 8 kidnapped civilians were rescued in the course of the operations.
“Additionally, 54 extra magazines of assorted arms and 20 motorcycles were recovered from bandits.
On Operation Safe Haven in Jos, the Acting DMO said, “Various operations were conducted against criminal elements including raid operations on criminal hideouts while troops repelled kidnappers and gunmen attacks at different locations across the theatre.
“These operations cumulatively resulted in the arrest of a total of 43 armed bandits/collaborators and drug peddlers, the rescue of 20 kidnapped civilians as well as recovery of 131 livestock, 12 assorted arms and 36 different calibres of ammunition among other items.
“Some of the operations were executed at; Bure as well as Mangu and Gindiri markets in Mangu LGA; Maraban Jama’a Checkpoint and Dogonahawa community in Jos South LGA; Maraban Foron and Kaskara forest in Barkin Ladi LGA of Plateau State.
“Other locations in Plateau State include; Butura Gida and Mabel villages as well as Bokkos town in Bokkos LGA, Farin Gada, Congo Russia and Angwan Keke areas in Jos North LGA as well as Kwanki – Ganawuri road and Ganawuri village in Riyom LGA.
“Other locations are; Dangwa forest area under Godogodo District and Gidan Waya town in Jama’a LGA; Rafin Gora village in Kaura LGA, Madauchi community in Zangon Kataf LGA and Kwankwiri village under Maitozo in Sanga LGA of Kaduna State.
“In Operation Whirl Stroke, troops’ operational efforts resulted in the neutralization and arrest of armed bandits and other criminal elements, recovery of arms and ammunition as well as the rescue of kidnapped civilians.
“Operations were conducted at; Atinyogo, Gbise and Gbor towns in Katsina-Ala LGA; Tyotsar Mbacher village under Shitile Council Ward of Ukum LGA and Igumale community in Ado LGA of Benue State.
“Other locations are; Kayio village in Wukari LGA of Taraba State; Kutara and Ruga Ahmadu Rufai community under Gurdi Ward in Abaji Area Council of the Federal Capital Territory.
“Cumulatively, a total of 5 criminals were neutralized and 19 of them arrested, while 15 different arms and 62 different calibres of ammunition were recovered and 3 kidnapped civilians rescued within the period under review.
“In addition, troops held peace and security meetings with critical stakeholders as non-kinetic means of tackling insecurity. One of these meetings was held at the Force Headquarters of Operation Whirl Stroke in Makurdi and issues discussed at the meeting centred on how to find lasting solutions to the security challenges.
Regarding banditry on the Abuja-Kaduna road and Kaduna state, Onyeuko said, “Troops of Operation Thunder Strike and Whirl Punch theatres recorded a few incidents of security concern. In the course of the operations within the period, troops intercepted and arrested criminal elements as well as recovered arms and ammunitions.
“Notably, on 3 December 2021, troops arrested a notorious armed bandit at Paka community in Igabi LGA of Kaduna State, who revealed that the Head of vigilantes in Rigasa aids armed banditry and is involved in some attacks and kidnap incidents in the environment.
“Other incidents with significant results were recorded at; Hayin Gada and Rugan Alhaji Ori villages in Igabi LGA of Kaduna State.
“Furthermore, the Air Component of Operation Thunder Strike, within the period carried out airstrikes against armed bandits at their enclaves. Notably, on 3 December 2021, following credible intelligence report and after careful aerial surveillance revealed activities of armed bandits east of Rijana village along Abuja – Kaduna Highway.
“Consequently, a force package of NAF’s platforms was dispatched to take out the criminal elements. The location, which the bandits use as a logistics base and staging point, where they perpetrated their nefarious activities along the Highway, was decimated by successive airstrikes that yielded devastating hits with heavy casualties.
“During the operation, 45 armed bandits were neutralized and their structures housing logistics items and weapons were destroyed. In addition, other armed bandits who escaped during the airstrikes were traced to a location 4km southeast of the Kaduna State NYSC Orientation Camp, where 30 of them were killed in airstrikes, which also destroyed their structures and weapons there.
“Cumulatively, a total of 6 criminal elements were arrested and 9 assorted armed, 2 extra AK-47 rifles magazines, 13 rounds of ammunition and 6 motorcycles were recovered in the course of the operations within the period.
“In Operation Delta Safe, troops sustained anti-illegal oil production operations and other non-kinetic operations to forestall activities of vandals and other economic saboteurs in the South-South Zone.
“Consequently, troops discovered and immobilized a total of 39 illegal refining sites, 73 ovens, 25 cooking pots/boilers, 18 cooling systems, 27 reservoirs, 39 large dugout pits and 89 storage tanks.
“Consequently, a total of One Million, Fourteen Thousand litres (1,014,000 ltrs) of illegally refined Automotive Gas Oil; 50,500 litres of Dual Purpose Kerosene and One Million, Eight Hundred And Eight Thousand, Five Hundred litres (1,808,500 ltrs) of stolen crude oil were recovered in the course of the operations.
“In addition, 18 criminals associated with pipeline vandalism, piracy, illegal oil bunkering and armed robbery were arrested within the period.
“Also, troops recovered 6 assorted arms, 586 rounds of the different calibre of ammunition, 12 AK-47 rifle magazines as well as 278 pieces of galvanized pipes and 40 wooden boats used for illegal oil bunkering activities in the course of the operations. All the arrested criminals and recovered items have been handed over to relevant security agencies for further action.
He said, “Some of these operations were executed at different locations in villages, creeks and towns in Port Harcourt including Emouha, Ahoada East, Abua/Odual, Bonny, Onne, Ogba/Egbema/Andoni and Akukutoru LGAs of Rivers State.
“Other locations are villages, towns and creeks in; Warri South, Warri South-West and Ethiope East LGAs of Delta State.
“Troops’ operations also yielded significant results at; Umualolo and Uwaza communities in Ukwa West LGA of Abia State and Lemna Roundabout in Calabar Metropolis, Cross Rivers State.
“The troops of Operation Delta Safe within the period, based on credible intelligence, ambushed and neutralized 2 kidnappers in a gun duel during anti-kidnap/anti-armed robbery patrol at Oviere community in Okpe LGA of Delta State.
“During the encounter troops recovered some arms and ammunition from the criminals, while of 100 pinches and 825 wraps of heroin and cannabis Sativa respectively, were found in their possession.