By Sumaila Ogbaje
Abuja – The Defence Headquarters says the troops of Operation Sahel Sanity have eliminated and arrested scores of bandits, cattle rustlers, kidnappers, and other criminal elements in the entire North West zone in recent time.
The Acting Director, Defence Media Operations, Brig.-Gen. Benard Onyeuko, disclosed this in a statement on Monday in Abuja.
Onyeuko disclosed that the troops had on July 22, troops arrested a notorious gun runner named Musa Abubakar alias Kasko/Buzu from Mai Wake village, Dakoro area of Maradi, Niger Republic.
He said that the suspect was arrested at the premises of a school in Gusau where his relative works as a security guard.
According to him, the suspect is believed to be involved in the supply of illicit arms from Niger Republic to Nigeria through Sabon Birni and Isah Local Government Area of Sokoto State.
“The suspect is in custody and providing useful information to the troops.
“Similarly, on July 25, troops deployed at Sabuwa received a distress call on kidnap activities in the town.
“Troops swiftly mobilised to the area and following a hot pursuit, the kidnappers abandoned their four kidnapped victims and fled.
“Victims were promptly rescued and subsequently reunited with their families,” he said.
Onyeuko also disclosed that the troops had on July 25 killed two bandits in a conduct and search operation at Gurbin Baure based on reliable information of bandits activities in the area.
He added that the remaining three of the bandits encountered were captured by the troops.
According to him, troops deployed at Forward Operation Base Bena arrested one bandit informant named Garba Faduwa at Anguwan Yara, Bankami, Faduwa and Danlayi villages in Zamfara same day .
“The suspect is presently undergoing interrogation. Same day, on July 25 troops deployed at Forward Operation Base Unashi on fighting patrol to Dan Kadai village following information of sighting of bandits around Akawo village under Bukkuyum LGA of Zamfara.
“The bandits fled on sighting the troops abandoning their victim one Alhaji Lawal Mamman.
“Victim was successfully rescued and currently receiving treatment for wounds inflicted by the bandits in the process.
“However, troops of Operation SAHEL SANITY continue to dominate the general area with aggressive patrols and ambushes paving way for smooth conduct of agricultural and economic activities by the locals.
“The Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai has commended the troops for their gallantry and resilience in the on going operation.
“He urges them not to rest on their oars but build on the successes so far achieved.
“He further assured the people of the North-West zone of the Nigerian Army’s commitment to the safety of lives and properties within the zone,” he said.