The Nigerian Military says it has significantly degraded activities of bandits in North-West Nigeria and is now in control of the region with assurances that the end to banditry is near.
The Coordinator, Defence Media Operations (DMO), John Enenche, a Major General, while disclosing that the military is now dominating the entire region, also disclosed that the encounters between the Military and bandits and even terrorists has witnessed a decline.
The coordinator who made this known on Thursday in Abuja said the feat was achieved through credible intelligence on the location of the bandits as well as sustained offensive against the criminals which has resulted in the elimination of scores of them.
“There is good news, for the past two days, there were no encounters and information kept coming in, that is the interesting thing about the North West, they will tell us where they are and when you go there, you will actually see them, and then they are being decimated.
“We don’t focus on one source of surveillance or action, we have both ground and air operations together and other technical sources.
“I can tell you that we are at the stage of domination now and that is quite encouraging” he said.
He added, “We have discovered that that direct encounters between us and the terrorists is on the low side, what it signifies is that once there is a reduction, it means the game is changing rapidly to the favour of the armed forces of Nigeria and Nigerians at large.”
Enenche, further giving update on the activities of the Armed Forces of Nigeria in the last one week said troops of Operation Hadarin Daji while on routine patrol around Gidan Dan Nunu and Dutsi villages of Zurmi Local Government Area of Zamfara State made contact with bandits and escued 7 kidnapped victims.
“Relatedly, on 31 December 2020, troops acting on credible intelligence rescued 2 women and a child kidnapped at Kimbisawa village of Batsari Local Government Area of Katsina State. Rescued victims were immediately reunited with their families” Enenche added.
In a related development, the Coordinator said troops of Operation Sahel Sanity arrested two suspected armed bandits on New Year day following a tip off at Maraban Maigora in Faskari Local Government Area and five armed bandits at Garin Garus.
“Preliminary investigation revealed that suspects had connection with a notorious armed bandit leader in Madachi village of Sabuwa Local Government Area”, he said.
In the North East Zone, the Coordinator said troops of Operation Lafiya Dole sustained their ground and air operations by adopting continuous vigilance and offensive postures.
“Within the period in focus, the Air Task Force of Operation Lafiya Dole neutralized several ISWAP terrorist elements and destroyed their structures alongside some logistics items in air strikes conducted at Tumbun Gini general area of Borno State” Enenche said.
In the South- South Zone, he said troops of Operation Delta Safe have continued with the aggressive fight against economic sabotage in the zone progressively.
“Within the period under review, acting on credible intelligence, Nigerian Navy Ship Delta Patrol team located a wooden boat laden with about 200,000 litres of product suspected to be crude oil. Accordingly, the boats along with the product were handled appropriately.
“Equally, Nigerian Navy Ship Delta patrol team discovered and immobilized an illegal refining site with 9 storage tanks and 4 ovens containing crude oil estimated to be about 150,000 litres at Olaipase Creek in Warri South Local Government Area of Delta State.
“The patrol team proceeded further within the same community and located another illegal refinery site with 15 storage tanks and 8 ovens laden with substance suspected to be illegally refined AGO estimated to be about 250,000 litres”, Enenche said.