The Nigerian Military Authority has said it was conscious of the fact that, the ongoing insurgency has contributed to make life worse for many citizens in several of geo-political zones across the country. The military also said it recognized the apprehension occasioned by kidnappings, particularly with recent events recorded in the FCT and other areas.
Major General Edward Buba,Director Defence Media Operations,made this know at a bi-weekly media briefing on the ongoing military operations held at Defence Headquarters Abuja Thursday 25th January,2024.
General Buba accordingly said; “Indeed, we may not have all the answers now. However, we assure citizens that we are working assiduously to address the situation both in the immediate and long term to ensure safety of lives and property. We are redoubling our efforts to ensure citizens live in a peaceful environment and have prosperous life. This is achievable and we are focussed on achieving it.
“The armed forces would destroy the cancer of terrorism that is ravaging our country thereby creating situations such as is ongoing in the Plateau State. The situation of insecurity that we are confronted with is self inflicted by own citizens upon one another. Nevertheless, It is our duty to protect citizens and create a safe environment for them to have a prosperous future.
“We do not take lightly of the privilege and enormous responsibility of safeguarding our citizens. It is for this reason that,we constantly rejig our operational strategies in order to adopt a the best course of action that would make these ugly experiences a thing of the past.
“Accordingly , we have deployed special forces to some of the hotspots in order to conduct targetted operations. We have also deployed several battlefield enablers to enhance intelligence and strike capability on these terrorists. We are encouraging the warring fractions to shield their swords.
“As for the FCT and environs, offensive operations are ongoing at the following locations; Cashew Forest, Kwaku, Gwombe, Gadoro and Tukuba all in Kuje Area Council. Other areas covered were Kawu, Igu, Tokulo, Gaba, Zuma 1 and Zuma 2, Shere, Mpape, Jikoko, Berger Quarry and Nukuchi Villages all in Bwari Area Council of FCT.
“In neighboring states to the FCT such as Niger State. Troops are conducting operations in ; Gauraka, Apo Forest, Gyedna/Sabon Wuse and Garam in Tafa LGA of Niger State. Additionally, troops covered Numan and Basa in Akwanga and Nasarawa LGAs of Nasarawa State respectively.
“As for the situation in the North Central, tension broke out in MANGU in the early hours of 23 Jan 24. The situation escalated and resulted in break down of law and order in MANGU Town and adjoining communities. The crisis which started from GANGARAN KWATA escalated to other parts of MANGU LGA despite concerted efforts by troops deployed to the general area to restore normalcy. Details to follow.
“Overall, during the week under review. Troops neutralised 94 and arrested 171 of them. Troops also arrested 43 perpetrators of oil theft and rescued 29 kidnapped hostages. In the SS, troops denied the oil theft of the estimated sum of Four Hundred and Eighty Five Million Nine Hundred and Eighty Three Thousand One Hundred and Fifty Naira (N485,983,150.00) only.
” Furthermore, troops recovered 168 assorted weapons and 2,757 assorted ammunition. The breakdown as follows: one GPMG, 85 AK47 rifles, one Vektor R4 rifle, one G3 rifle, 10 pump action guns, 12 locally fabricated guns, 6 locally made pistols, 21 dane gun, one double barrel gun, one fabricated revolver rifle, 2 x 36 hand grenades and one fabricated dane gun.
“Others are: 290 rounds of 7.62mm NATO, 2,132 rounds of 7.62mm special ammo, 115 rounds of 5.66mm ammo, 29 rounds of PKT ammo, 10 rounds of 9mm ammo, 297 cartridges, 21 magazines, 14 vehicles, 35 motorcycles, 27 mobile phones, 2 baofeng radios and the sum of N2,594,000.00 amongst other items.
“Troops in the Niger Delta area discovered and destroyed 16 dugout pits, 51 boats, 49 storage tanks and 3 vehicles. Other items recovered include 38 cooking ovens, 3 pump machines and 31 illegal refining sites. Troops recovered 363,875 litres of stolen crude oil, 198,315 litres of illegally refined AGO and 5,200 litres of PMS.
“Overall, we would like citizens to clearly understand why we are fighting this war. They should understand that the terrorist will not stop, until they are stopped.
“Everyone should understand that the terrorist and their cohorts exist for the sake of war. Therefore for the sake of peace they must be eliminated. All hands must be on deck, in our villages, communities and environments to ensure that the security forces are supported with necessary information to win this war. We also urge trusted voices by the people to use their voice for good and not for evil. There is need to stop the bleeding and commence the healing.
“On the whole, the military is doing everything to guarantee the safety and security of citizens. We will continue to do more and make improvements”.