…DHQ says Troops eliminate over 50 terrorists in 3 weeks ***
President Muhammadu Buhari has expressed his anguish over the death of seven personnel of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), who were ambushed and killed by bandits in Kaduna State while on official duty.
In a statement by his spokesman, Malam Garba Shehu, on Thursday in Abuja, Buhari described the loss of the NSCDC personnel as a tragic event and salutes the courage of the men who gave their lives to the nation.
He said: “The NSCDC personnel who braved all challenges to guard our nation and its people had made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty.
“My thoughts are with the bereaved families and their compatriots in the service. May Almighty God grant them and the entire service the fortitude to bear the loss.”
The president, therefore, directed the Armed Forces to smoke out the bandits who inflicted this casualty and make them pay the price.
In another development, the Defence Headquarters DHQ says, troops of the armed forces eliminated more than 50 terrorists in various operations in North East and North West theatres of operation in three weeks.
The Director, Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. Musa Danmadami made this known while briefing newsmen on the operations of the military across the country on Thursday in Abuja.
Danmadami said the troop of Operation Hadin Kai (OPHK) had between Dec. 30 and Jan. 12, eliminated no fewer than 25 Boko Haram and Islamic State of West Africa Province (ISWAP) terrorists in the North East.
He said that the troops also apprehended 18 terrorists and 21 logistics suppliers, two foreign informants and five kidnappers across the theatre during the period.
Danmadami said the troops also rescued 47 abducted civilians while a total of 377 Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists and members of their families, comprising 52 adult males, 126 adult females and 199 children surrendered to troops.
He said all recovered items, apprehended criminals, and rescued civilians were handed over to the appropriate authority for further action.
“The captured terrorists and those surrendered with members of their families are being profiled for further action.
“Cumulatively, within the last three weeks, troops recovered 21 AK47 rifles, four FN rifles, three locally pumps made action guns, five locally made pistols and three PKT machine guns.
“Other items recovered are 124 rounds of 7.62mm NATO, 139 rounds of 7.62mm special, 29 rounds of 5.56mm ammunition, 140mm bomb.
“Also recovered are, 1 UXO 81mm mortar bomb, three RPG tubes and bombs, 36 hand grenades, five dane guns and five FN magazines, 19 drums of Automotive Gas Oil, and five drums of Premium Motor Spirit.
“10 bags of assorted grains, 10 crates of soft drinks, 150 pieces of used clothing, 50 pieces women’s fabrics, 50 children’s wear and 30 pairs of women’s footwear were also recovered.
“Other items include, textiles materials, medical supplies, 21 motorcycles, 16 bicycles, two grinding machines, one tanker loaded with PMS, 30 rustle cattle, the sum of N938, 580.00 and other sundry items,” he said.
Danmadami said the series of air interdiction operations at terrorists’ hideouts, enclaves and camps also eliminated scores of the terrorists and destroyed their enclaves in Borno and Lake Chad area.
He said that the battle damage assessment revealed that several terrorists were neutralised with their structures destroyed in the strikes.
In North West, Danmadami said the land and air component of Operation Hadin Daji had sustained offensive operations on terrorists enclaves, camps and hideouts within the zone.
He said the troops had within the period neutralised 25 terrorists, apprehended 19 and rescued 68 civilians while scores of other terrorists were killed in air interdiction operations.
Danmadami said the troops had between Jan. 7 and Jan. 8 conducted a dawn attack at terrorists crossing points in Sunke and Gado forest in Anka Local Government Area of Zamfara, killing 10 terrorists, and recovering a cache of arms and other items.
The defence spokesman said the troops also apprehended a terrorist collaborator at Madachi in Dandume Local Government Area of Katsina State at a checkpoint with a sum of N1.5 million.
According to him, the suspect revealed that he was sent by one Nasiru, a notorious terrorist on the wanted list of security agents.
“Nasiru was responsible for the killing of several locals in Birni Gwari Local Government Area of Kaduna State.
“Also, between Dec. 27 and Dec 31, the air component conducted series of air interdiction operations at terrorists hide out in Kaduna and Zamfara that inflated casualties on the terrorists.
“Notably, on Dec. 31, a well-planned and coordinated air interdiction operation was carried out at identified notorious and wanted terrorist kingpin, Dankarami hideout along Kaura Namoda road in Zurmi Local Government Area of Zamfara.
“Following the airstrike, feedback revealed that several of his foot soldiers were eliminated while Dankarami himself escaped with serious injuries,” he said.