Terrorists in disarray as NAF bombards Kaduna, Niger

With the latest marching order from President Muhammadu Buhari, security agencies have taken the battle to the terrorists with scores of them being neutralised by ground troops and air assets during an operation in Galbi, Chikun local government area of Kaduna state.

In an operational feedback sent to the state government by the security agencies, troops of the Operation Forest Sanity supported by assets of the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) conducted clearance operations on an identified terrorist enclave in Galbi general area.

Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs Samuel Aruwan announced this in a statement weekend.

Aruwan said: “During their advance, the security forces crossed River Kaduna and ran into stiff resistance from the insurgents. After a fierce firefight, scores of terrorists were confirmed neutralized as the military forces prevailed.

“Two General Purpose Machine Guns (GPMGs), three AK47 rifles and seven motorcycles were recovered from the enclave of the neutralized bandits. The Kaduna State Government expressed excitement at the feedback, and praised the troops for their tenacity in this significant victory against the enemy forces.

“The Government thanked the troops, air force crews, police personnel, intelligence operatives, and local vigilante members who contributed to the success of the mission. The Government urged the security forces to increase the momentum and vanquish the terrorists for good.

“Troops will continue clearance operations in the general area, and other identified areas of interest across the state.

“The Kaduna State Government hereby encourages residents to volunteer useful information on activities or movement of terrorists to security agencies. Citizens may also contact the Kaduna State Security Operations on 09034000060 or 08170189999.”

Blueprint further gathered that the insurgents in both Niger and Kaduna states also suffered heavy casualties following offensive operations by the NAF.

Launching ‘Operation Show No Mercy,’ Chief of Air Staff Air Marshal Oladayo Amao had charged the senior air troops to ensure the application of maximum firepower.

“We in the Air Force don’t like publicising our operations when it is still ongoing so as to kill all these enemies at once, but I can authoritatively confide in you that they (terrorists) are already feeling the heat.

“Like I always tell you, we don’t kill, we only neutralise. We have neutralised scores of these adversaries particularly in Kaduna and Niger communities through our airstrikes. Some of them who were not hit by the airstrikes are currently on the run.

“We have gotten a marching order to wipe them off because these enemies are already threatening sovereignty of this nation. We won’t relent until we clear them or they surrender to us.

“The operation continues but I won’t tell you the communities we are carrying out the next operations so that these people won’t run away before we get there. No going back! Enough is enough! For us, we must get them out for peace to return to our fatherland,” said a top military source.

Gabkwet confirms  

Confirming the development while speaking to journalists in Abuja, NAF Director of Information Air Commodore Edward Gabkwet said: “Over the weekend, NAF aircraft struck a terrorists gathering at Kurebe in Shiroro Local Government Area of Niger State after intelligence revealed that the terrorists had assembled for an important meeting hosted by Aminu Duniya, a Boko Haram terrorists’ commander.

“Aminu Duniya was said to have invited the terrorists to his enclave at Kurebe to the meeting which obviously attracted numerous terrorists who came in large numbers on their motorbikes.

“The air strike was successful and resulted in the death of many terrorists, though it remains unclear if Aminu Duniya was also neutralised in the strike.

“It should be noted that Kurebe is a known terrorists’ haven as the local inhabitants of Kurebe have since vacated the villages in and around the area after the terrorists drove them away in 2021.

“The strike at Kurebe came barely hours after a coordinated joint air and ground operations, neutralised several terrorists operating around Damba – Galbi axis in Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State.

“The activities of the terrorists continued to make life unbearable to locals in the area. So, when intelligence had revealed that the terrorists planned overrunning  a nearby village within the vicinity, the military saw that as an opportunity to surprise them.

“While Nigerian Army troops laid siege around the location, NAF aircraft were directed to the suspected location of the terrorists which was then attacked. Several terrorists were confirmed killed after the strike.”

Teacher killed in Nasarawa

Also, gunmen suspected to be armed robbers killed a teacher in Government Science Secondary School Nasarawa-Eggon, Nasarawa state, Auta Nasela.

A staff member of the school who did not want to be named told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) Sunday that the attack occurred at about 8:00 p.m. Saturday.

He said the gunmen gained entrance into the school premises and went straight to the residence of the deceased, demanding money.

The source added that the deceased ran to his neighbour’s apartment, but was pursued and shot by one of the gunmen.

He said that another staff member of the school, Timothy Malle was also shot but survived the attack, adding that he was rushed to the hospital for medical attention.

Confirming the incident, Ramhan Nansel, Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) in the state, said the incident was a case of armed robbery.

“Yesterday around 8:45 p.m, a distress call was received from GSS Nassarawa-Eggon that hoodlums invaded the residence of one Auta Nasela.

“When they gained entrance, they started demanding money but the man escaped to his neighbour’s house, but one of the hoodlums followed him and shot him.

“He was rushed to the General Hospital Nasarawa-Eggon by the police, but unfortunately died while receiving treatment,” Mr. Nansel, a deputy superintendent of police, added.

The PPRO said the police have since commenced an investigation into the matter with a view to arresting and bringing the perpetrators to book.

He called on members of the public to always avail the police with information about criminal elements for necessary action.(NAN).

IGP orders

 In a related development, Inspector-General of Police Usman Baba has ordered the deployment of water-tight security to cover all schools, hospitals, health workers, and critical national infrastructure around the country. 

Force Public Relations Officer (FPRO) CSP Olumuyiwa Adejobi said this in a statement Sunday in Abuja.

Adejobi said: “The IGP has equally ordered regular patrols, stop and search, raids, and show of force by tactical commanders to clamp down on pockets of crime and criminality recorded in some states of the federation.

“The IGP gave the directive while reviewing the general security situation of the nation via reports from commands and formations across the country.

“The IGP has, however, tasked strategic police managers at various levels to prioritise the use of intelligence gathering networks, particularly traditional/local intelligence to locate criminal hideouts and flush them out before they strike.

“He has equally charged all officers and men to be on the offensive, and take the fight against crime to the doorposts of suspected criminal elements, including bushes and uncompleted buildings, profile them, and charge those found wanting to courts accordingly.

“Against the backdrop of this development, Nigerians are hereby urged to cooperate with the Police as many police operatives will be seen at strategic areas, routes and communities, in order to suppress the antics and criminal activities of men of the underworld.”

“The IGP has however warned officers and men of the Nigeria Police Force to be civil, professional and humane in the course of discharging their duties.

“The IGP has therefore reiterated his commitment to the protection of lives and property of well-meaning members of the public by decimating the activities of rogue criminal elements, particularly those who target schools, hospitals, and other critical national infrastructure, in a bid to strike fear into the hearts of good citizens in the country.

“He has similarly charged police officers to protect with courage and serve with compassion in line with his administration’s policing theme,” the statement further added.

 Northern youth on NSA

In another development, the Arewa Youth Assembly (AYA) will embark on a peaceful protest Wednesday in Abuja to demand the resignation of the National Security Adviser (NSA), Babagana Monguno, over the lingering insecurity in the country. 

In a statement in Kaduna Sunday, the group said for the past seven years that Mungono was appointed to the sensitive position of NSA, the security situation in the country had been abysmal, as terrorists and other criminal elements unleashed mayhem on Nigerians. 

The statement signed by the AYA spokesman, Ali Mohammed, said there were enough reasons for Monguno to have resigned his appointment, “but he has refused to step down despite the mass killings across the country.”

The group lamented that “Nigerians are no longer safe anywhere — on the roads, farms, working place, markets and even their homes — as terrorists move about freely kidnapping, killing and collecting millions of naira as ransom. 

“As Nigerians are being killed mercilessly on daily basis, the NSA is comfortably occupying his office, enjoying uncompromised security, knowing these criminals cannot get to him.”  

According to the group, Nigerians, who are being killed by the terrorists, were the people who supported President Muhammadu Buhari to ensure his election and re-election in the hope that there would be an improvement in security and life will be better. 

The group recalled that Buhari’s promise to address security challenges and tackle corruption were among the reasons Nigerians voted for him.

It lamented that, “to the greatest surprise and dismay of the people, the security situation in the country is even worse under the Buhari administration”.

The group attributed the worsening insecurity to the failure of the NSA to live up to the responsibilities of his office.

“Mallam Garba Shehu confirmed that terrorists’ demands were met, but the federal government’s demand was not met by these terrorists, which is freeing the kidnapped passengers of the Abuja-Kaduna train. This is an embarrassment.

“Mr. President, you cannot continue to retain the NSA at the detriment of the lives of the people. You cannot allow the security architecture to keep deteriorating, the NSA must go, he has nothing to offer, his ideas are obsolete and not contributing anything positive to the bad security situation in the country.

“We from the north are tired of these senseless killings, picking us one after another, we are suffering more than any region of the country, the insecurity is contributing to poverty and shortage of food. 

“We therefore want the NSA gone for good, we want a positive change, we want an individual who is capable, active, brave, intelligent and equal to the task, we want an individual who can help address the security challenges.

“It is on this note that we hereby call out for a mass peaceful protest to hold on Wednesday 17th of August, 2022 at exactly 8am.

“The protest is to hold at the gates of the Presidential Villa, FCT-Abuja as clearly stated in our notification sent to the relevant security authorities.

“This is to show our sadness and rejection of the situation of national security and demand for the resignation of the National Security Adviser, Gen. Babagana Monguno (rtd),” the group said. 

Mohammed added that similar peaceful protests would be held in the 19 northern states at a later date.

‘Nation’s territorial shrinking’  

 Still on security, a former presidential aspirant of the African Democratic Congress (ADC), Kingsley Moghalu, has charged Nigerians to interrogate candidates vying for different elective offices on crises bedeviling the country.

The ex-deputy governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) made the call via his verified Twitter handle Sunday.

He also challenged candidates to look very closely at the country’s fundamental issues.

While saying   the country was under threat but its challenges were addressable via focused leadership, he said: “It seems to me that the most important question for the 2023 elections and whoever wins the presidency is the existential matter of security and the shrinking territorial integrity of Nigeria under the threat of terrorism. We should interrogate all the candidates on this.

“I don’t think we’ve heard enough from them on this. We must not let the 2023 election be about stylish but empty slogans and emotional vituperations without a cold look at our fundamentals. A state is not really a state in international law if it’s not in control of its territory.” (RipplesNigeria)

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