By Capt. Hashim Abdullahi
- AIR FORCE BOMBS BOKO HARAM WEAPONS IN SAMBISA
The Nigerian Air Force Wednesday said it has destroyed artillery guns belonging to the Boko Haram Terrorists in Sambisa forest with a Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA). The Director of Public Relations and Information of the NAF, Air Vice Marshal Olatokunbo Adesanya, said in a statement supported with a video clip that the operation was conducted after an Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance platform had confirm the presence of the terrorists weapons in the area. AVM Adesanya said: “A Nigerian Air Force (NAF) remotely piloted aircraft (RPA), on 6 February 2018, successfully destroyed an artillery gun belonging to the Boko Haram Terrorists (BHTs) in the vicinity of Sambisa Forest. “A NAF Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) platform had sighted the artillery gun while on a routine surveillance around the outskirt of the Sambisa general area. “Consequently, the surveillance ISR aircraft requested for an immediate air strike and a NAF RPA was deployed to interdict the target.
- NIGERIAN GOVERNMENT SET TO FREE BOKO HARAM SUSPECTS FROM DETENTION AFTER INVESTIGATION
The Federal Government of Nigeria says it will release suspected Boko Haram members from detention, once it is established that they are not insurgents. The FG also explained its policy of integrating the Civilian Joint Task Force into the security forces, giving them concession without jettisoning such requirements as medical fitness, educational qualification, federal character principle and others. Minister of Defence, Brig. General Dan Mansur-Ali (retd), who disclosed these in Maiduguri, Borno State, at the special town hall meeting on security situation in the North East, said every relevant agency including medical doctors, psychologists, judiciary officers and others, was working round the clock to ensure they were properly profiled. Through the “Operation Safe Corridor,” he said, those cleared after painstaking screening would be released. “We have so many tables they are going through what level of depth some of these prisoners have been with the Boko Haram. Some of them are being sourced; some are going to be released; some of them will be detained. It’s an issue of time; and the judiciary is also doing its own part. “The Attorney General of the Federation is in consonance with the Ministry of Defence, Defence Headquarters and other medical personnel that are searching through these people to source out, so that those that have very criminal cases will be removed and others will be free as soon as possible,” he said.
- CHIEF OF ARMY STAFF DEPLOYS TROOPS TO BENUE, TARABA, 4 OTHER STATES
AT last, the Chief of Army Staff, Lt General Tukur Buratai has ordered immediate deployment of Army troops to Benue, Taraba, Nasarawa, Kogi, Niger and Kaduna states to contend insecurity in the six states. The deployment came following ceaseless clashes between farmers and herdsmen which have resulted to several deaths and destruction of property worth several billions of naira. He Nigerian Army which announced the development at a press conference, Wednesday, at its headquarters in Abuja, said the troops will carry out special operations in the affected states in conjunction with other sister security agencies from the Nigerian Police, Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps among others.
- INSECURITY: REPLACE IGP NOW, REPS TELL BUHARI AS ARMY DEPLOYS TROOPS TO BENUE, OTHER
The Federal Government, yesterday, ordered immediate deployment of troops to Benue, Taraba, Nasarawa, Kogi, Niger and Kaduna states to contain insecurity in the six states. The deployment came following ceaseless clashes between farmers and herdsmen which have resulted in several deaths and destruction of property worth several billions of Naira. Meanwhile, peeved by the state of insecurity in the country, the House of Representatives, yesterday, asked President Muhammadu Buhari to sack the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, and replace him with ‘a more professional officer’. This came on a day the Senate threw out the report of the Committee on Police Affairs, National Security and Intelligence over recent killings in Benue State, and scolded the committee for writing and presenting what it described as unbalanced and incomplete report. Deployment of troops The Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Tukur Buratai, who announced the development at a press conference, yesterday in Abuja, said the troops will carry out special operations in the affected states in conjunction with other sister security agencies, including the Nigerian Police, Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps among others. Army Chief of Training and Operations, Major General David Ahmadu, who briefed the media on behalf of Buratai on the planned conduct of the special Army operations, tagged: ”Exercise Ayem Akpatuma”, said the exercise had become more “expedient due to upsurge in cases of armed banditry, kidnapping and cattle rustling in Kaduna and Niger states as well as other sundry crimes in Kogi State and herdsmen/farmers clashes and attacks on innocent members of our communities, particularly in Benue, Taraba and Nasarawa states by armed militias.”
- FG TO SET UP FIRE ARMS CONTROL COMMISSION —DEFENCE MINISTER
The Federal Government on Monday announced plans to establish a commission for the control of illegal firearms in the country. The Minister of Defence, retired Lt.-Gen. Mansur Dan-Ali, made the disclosure while fielding questions in Maiduguri at the Special Town Hall meeting for the military and security agencies in the Northeast. “We have so many proliferations of arms in the country; it is part of my ministry’s responsibilities to control it and it is done initially through a process, which was before a committee. “Now, through the intervention of the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed forces of Nigeria; “he has agreed to upgrade it to a commission, whereby there will be very knowledgeable and committed persons who will entrust this commission that will help in assemble and collection of the arms in the hands of criminals across the country,” he said. Dan-Ali said a committee had already been constituted to work out modalities to facilitate smooth take-off of the commission, adding that the committee is expected to submit its report within three weeks. The minister said that the federal government had adopted effective strategies to transform the Nigeria Army into a professionally responsive military to enable it discharge its duties in the protection of lives, safeguarding the nation’s territory and peace building.
- DONALD TRUMP COMMENDS NIGERIA’S MILITARY STRENGTH
Defence minister Mansur Dan-Ali has said that Nigerian troops had freed 30,000 captives from Boko Haram Terrorists and that Donald Trump had commended Nigeria’s military strength when they met at a recent security meeting in Saudi Arabia. The retired Brigadier General said on Monday at the special town hall meeting held for the military and security agencies in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital. He said that the Armed Forces of Nigeria have recorded remarkable success during the period under review particularly in the area of degrading the Boko Haram Terrorists in the North-East and that there have been significant reduction in insecurity and criminalities in the Niger Delta and other parts of the country. He also hailed the political commitment and support of President Muhammadu Buhari saying that the support gave boost to the key successes recorded by the Military against insurgency and insecurity in the country. He said ‘Our gallant troops of the Armed Forces have successfully degraded the capacity of the Boko Haram insurgents in the North-East. Currently, no Nigerian territory is under the control of the Boko Haram Terrorists. So far we have freed over 30 thousand persons mainly women and children held hostage by the terrorists. ‘The recent changes in the leadership of Theatre Command Operation LAFIYA DOLE and that of 7 Division Nigerian Army gave new direction and vigour to the operations in the North-East.
- BUHARI VISITS LAFIA, ORDERS CLAMPDOWN ON ILLEGAL ARMS
President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday in Lafia, Nasarawa State, directed security operatives across the country to arrest and prosecute anybody found carrying illegal arms and ammunition. He said his administration would not tolerate further attacks by suspected herdsmen and other bandits. Buhari gave the directive at the inauguration of the Comprehensive Special School in Lafia, Nasarawa State, during his one-day visit to the state. The President assured Nigerians that the Federal Government was working hard to ensure peace and stability across the country. Buhari said, “I also want to assure the people of the North-Central and indeed all Nigerians that the Federal Government is working day and night to ensure that peace and stability return. “We have deployed additional resources to all the affected areas to maintain law and order. The attacks by suspected herdsmen and other bandits will not be tolerated. “I appeal to all Nigerians to refrain from attacks. The security agencies have standing instructions to arrest and prosecute any and all persons found with illegal arms.”
- HOW ALEX BADEH ALLEGEDLY USED WIFE TO LAUNDER N3.9 BILLION – EFCC
The trial of Air Chief Alex S. Badeh, former Chief of Air Staff resumed on Tuesday before Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court, Maitama, Abuja, with the cross-examination of the nineteenth prosecution witness, Abubakar Madaki. Mr. Madaki, an operative of the EFCC had earlier narrated how his team of investigators discovered millions of naira diverted by Mr. Badeh from Nigeria Air Force’s accounts through companies supposedly owned by members of his family. At the sitting on Tuesday, Mr. Madaki, while responding to questions by Mr. Badeh’s counsel, Akin Olujimi, told the court that the Zenith Bank account allegedly used to launder the funds had ‘Mary Badeh’, the first defendant’s wife, as its sole signatory. Referring to Exhibits H1 to H47, Mr. Madaki stated that, “Mary Badeh became the sole signatory to the account of Iyalikam Nigeria Limited in a letter signed by one Salamah Badeh, dated June 23, 2004 but acknowledged on March 21, 2016.” In yet another revelation, Mr. Madaki said, “The directors of Prince and Princess Multiservices Ltd (another company through which NAF funds were allegedly laundered) as indicated in the Certificate of Incorporation, as at August 22, 2007, are the first defendant and members of his family. The sole signatory to the bank account for this company is the first defendant’s wife, Mary Badeh”.
- NIGERIAN AIR FORCE ESTABLISHES TAILORING WORKSHOP, 11 OTHER BUSINESSES
The Nigerian Air Force Investment Limited (NAFIL), said it has established a total of 12, business outfits to boost and secure the welfare of personnel. NAFIL, said it has also provided jobs and training for personnel, their spouses, barracks youths and civilians interested in trades. The training and job offers is said to have drastically reduced social vices among barracks youth. Managing Director of NAFIL, Air Vice Marshal Abubakar Bala, Bagare, said this in Abuja. Bagare said NAFIL established in 2011, as a private company, among others offers world class investment and financial services towards ensuring a secure future for personnel and enhance motivation through training. He said the initiative was borne by the desire to key into some of the vision of the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshall Sadiq Abubakar, for human capacity development though robust and results oriented training. AVM, Bagare, who said NAFIL, investments has greatly contributed to the reduction of unemployment among spouses and children of NAF personnel including civilians said the establishment of workshop which is charged with the responsibility of meeting the uniform production requirement for the NAF, has drastically reduced the problem of fake uniforms and made it easy to identify a fake personnel.
- WIFE OF BOKO HARAM’S CHIEF DOCTOR SURRENDERS TO NIGERIAN TROOPS
Mrs. Rabi Abu-Yasir, wife of the Boko Haram’s chief physician, on Saturday surrendered to the military on Operation Lafiya Dole. The army is currently on clearance operation to route out remnants of the insurgents. Maj.-Gen. Rogers Nicholas, the Theatre Commander, Operation Lafiya Dole, made the disclosure while handing over 82 women and children rescued from the insurgents’ captivity to the Borno State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), in Maiduguri. Rabi told newsmen that her husband was the medical doctor to the insurgents’ leader, Abubakar Shekau. She said that she was rescued on Friday after the troops dislodged the insurgents’ enclaves in Sambisa Forest. Recounting her ordeal, Rabi said that unlike her peers, she enjoyed preferential treatment and privileges in view of her position as a wife to the physician. “My husband, Abu-Yasir, is Shekau’s physician, he also treats patients and conduct the surgical operations. “My type of food and other consumables are better from what they gave out to other women and children in the camps. “We suffered in their hands and they warned us that Nigerian troops will kill anybody who surrenders to them. “They always told us to stay with them and encouraged us not to submit to the troops. Boko Haram fighters surrender to military “The military is taking care of us, as against the wrong notion the insurgents made us believe,” she said. Rabi lauded the military for the rescue operation and called on the abducted persons still in the bush to come out and surrender to the troops. Nicholas explained that Rabi was among the 84 civilians rescued by the troops. He disclosed that eight of the 84 rescued persons were currently receiving treatment at the Nigerian Air Force Medical facility in Maiduguri.