*Guards Brigade kill 4 bandits in Nasarawa
*Block crude oil thieves
By Chuks Oyema-Aziken
Troops of Guards Brigade, Nigerian Army, operating with troops of Operation WHIRL STROKE have killed four bandits in a clearance operation in Toto Local Government Area of Nasarawa State.
Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, Major-General John Enenche disclosed this when briefing the press on updates on ongoing military operations across the country.
He said the operation supported by the Nigerian Airforce was a follow up exploitation against fleeing Daru Salam Sect recently dislodged from their camps at Uttu general area of Nasarawa State.
“During the Operation, troops engaged the criminals and neutralized 4 of them. In all the operations, most of the bandits and criminals fled or escaped with gun shot wounds with narrow chances of survival.
He restated the commitment of the Armed Forces of Nigeria (AFN) to fighting insurgency and other criminal activities in the country.
He said troops of Operation LAFIA DOLE had very intensive clearance operations cutting across the theatre during this period.
“A combined effort of the Land and Air components saw several decapitation of BHT/ISWAP elements. Their activity was focused more on criminality such as attack on loose targets to loot and steal logistics items. However, they were monitored and tracked through Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance and vetted human intelligence at Shokotoko near Damboa, Borno State. Thereafter, they were struck with resultant massive casualties.
“Within the same period, troops of Operation HADARIN DAJI, Operation WHIRL PUNCH and Operation WHIRL STROKE in Zamfara, Niger and Nasarawa States neutralized several bandits, rescued kidnapped victims and recovered some equipment. These feats were achieved through ground and air operations. In Operation HADARIN DAJI, troops neutralized several bandits including a notorious gunrunner popularly known as ALHAJI in Zamfara State. Troops also rescued 10 men, 4 women and 4 minors during the period. Weapons recovered by troops include, one GPMG, 140 rounds of 12.7mm ammunition, 3 AK47 rifles, 86 rounds of 7.62mm (special) ammunition, 53 blank ammunition and a motorcycle. Other items recovered are water-jet explosives and 2 inches of Det 33 cable for Improvised Explosive Devices. In same vein, troops rescued 7 kidnapped victims and neutralized several bandits.
Gen. Enenche said the military is also playing a role in curbing crude oil thefts and protect economic assets.
He said: “Cumulatively, about 65,000ltrs of illegally refined AGO and 943.5 barrels of suspected stolen crude oil were impounded from oil thieves. Additionally, crude oil thieves were denied stealing of about 408,000ltrs of illegally refined AGO, 2,232.4 barrels of stolen crude oil and 29,000ltrs of DPK.
“The Armed forces of Nigeria will remain committed to protecting our Exclusive Economic Zone in order to curtail economic sabotage and ensure the economic security of the maritime environment.”