…As Air Chief assures: ‘We will clear bandits in North-West’***
The Air Component of Operation Hadarin Daji has been restructured into a deadly war machine, decimating several camps and killing 135 armed bandits, in three-day massive air raids through several locations in Katsina and Zamfara States.
The Defence Headquarters confirmed this, saying the air raids which took place between May 20 and May 22 was part of the renewed offensive to rid the North-West of armed bandits and other criminal elements.
Expatiating on this, the Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. John Enenche, in a statement on Saturday, explained that the airstrikes were undertaken sequel to credible intelligence reports as well as series of Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) missions that led to the identification of the camps.
The camps, according to him, include Abu Radde Camps 1 and 2, and Dunya in Jibia and DanMusa Local Government Areas of Katsina State as well as Hassan Tagwaye’s Camp; Alhaji Auta’s Camp and Maikomi in Birnin Magaji and Zurmi Local Government Areas of Zamfara.
He said the air interdiction missions were undertaken by the attack aircraft to the locations in multiple bombing runs, adding that some were executed simultaneously.
“At the Abu Radde Camps on 20 May 2020, a set of huts housing one of the notorious bandit leaders was taken out by airstrikes with scores of the bandits killed and few seen fleeing with gunshot wounds towards the Dumburum Forest.
“Similar air raids were executed at Hassan Tagwaye’s and Alhaji Auta’s Camps as well as at Maikomi with equally devastating effects.
“HUMINT reports later confirmed that no fewer than 135 bandits were neutralised by the series of airstrikes at the various locations.
“The Chief of the Air Staff (CAS) commends the team for their professionalism and directs them to remain resolute, in order to achieve the directives of the Chief of Defence Staff to restore normalcy to all parts of Nigeria,”
Meanwhile, the Chief of Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, said that officers and men of the Nigerian Air Force would soon clear bandits in Katsina State and the North-West region.
Sadique stated this when 60 additional Airmen and Officers were deployed on Thursday to Katsina for Special “Operation Harbin Daji” in Batsari and Jibiya areas and other flash spots in the state.
The Air Officer Commanding Special Operation, Bauchi Command, Air Vice Marshal (AVM) Charles Ohwo, represented the Chief of Air Staff during the deployment.
Sadique said that the Air Force would soon rid Katsina State and the entire North West geo-political zone of banditry and other crimes.
He charged the airmen and officers deployed for the operations to remain committed in the operation in accordance with the Air Force Core Values.
“I implore you to inject more fighting techniques which you have learnt to bear with your assignment with a view to bringing the bandits to their kneels.
“I am very sure, with the help of God, we will succeed. There’ll soon be no hiding place for the bandits in Katsina and the entire North West Geo-Political Zone,” he assured.
Sadique thanked Gov Aminu Masari for his support and cooperation to the Air Force and the Special Operations unit in the state.
He said barely 48 hours after their deployment to the state, the operation had started yielding positive results.