Operation Sahel Sanity, a component of the Nigerian Army says its troops recently neutralized two bandits, arrested over 150 others and recovered some ammunition.
The Army said the feat followed an intelligence-based aggressive clearance operation, fighting and confidence-building patrols and ambushes against criminal elements within the northwest zone.
According to the Sahel Sanity’s Acting Director, Defense media operations, Brigadier- General Bernard Onyeuko, the troops conducted a well-coordinated intelligence-based operation leading to the raid of an illegal mining site located along Gadan Zaima – Zuru road in Bukuyyum Local Government Area of Zamfara State which he said also serve as bandits’ hideout.
“During the operations, troops arrested 150 suspects and recovered 20 locally fabricated Dane guns. One of the suspects was neutralized while trying to escape. Preliminary investigation reveals that aside sabotaging the nation’s economy, banditry is being financed through these illegal mining activities”
Brigadier General Onyeuko explained that troops on fighting patrol encountered three bandits on motorcycles around Maigalma village in Anka Local Government Area of Zamfara State while attempting to attack innocent residents.
“During the encounter, one of the bandits was neutralized while others escaped. Troops recovered one AK-47 Rifle, one AK 47 Rifle magazine loaded with 5 rounds of 7.62mm ammunition and two motorcycles from the fleeing bandits”
“Also, the troops acting on actionable intelligence raided a known bandit hideout around Dogon Karfe village in Bakura Local Government Area of Zamfara. During the operation, four Dane guns and one loaded magazine were recovered by the troops in an abandoned structure”
“Same day, following credible intelligence, troops deployed at Wagini village arrested a wanted notorious bandit named Isuhu Ibrahim (aka Bula) who in the company of other bandits have been terrorizing the general area for a while”
He said that troops deployed at Daki Takwas conducted a snap roadblock and successfully intercepted a Toyota Corolla car with Reg No. DAL 41MT, stressing that after a diligent search on the vehicle, troops discovered 11 brand new locally-made rifles and 150 live cartridges carefully concealed in different parts of the vehicle.
“Preliminary investigation reveals that the dangerous cargo was heading to Kofar Dinya in Bukkuyum Local Government Area of Zamfara State. A total of five men were arrested in connection with the illegal firearms”
The operation Sahel Sanity spokesman noted that a repentant bandit leader named Bornon Kejo willingly surrendered to troops and submitted 2 AK-47 rifles and 2 AK 47 rifle magazines at Zurmi in Zurmi Local Government Area of Zamfara State.
“Efforts are ongoing to recover more weapons as well as encourage others to embrace peace and submit their arms. Additionally, troops of Operation Sahel Sanity deployed at Sabon Layi rescued one adult male and one female earlier kidnapped by suspected bandits”
“The victims were kidnapped alongside four other persons at Daudawa village of Faskari Local Government Area of Katsina State.
However, the victims managed to escape from their abductors as a result of troops intense operational activities in the area”
Onyeuko explained that the rescued persons have been handed over to officials of Faskari Local Government Area for onward reunion with their families while efforts are ongoing to rescue the remaining four victims.
“Also, troops acting on a tipoff arrested a suspected bandit named Masaudu Abubakar. The suspect was identified to be a member of a syndicate terrorizing the area. In the same vein, troops on fighting patrol apprehended a suspected bandit named Tukur Haliru. The suspect was arrested while trying to sneak into Yargamji village on a spy mission from Danjiko Forest”
He pointed out that seven trucks loaded with cattle suspected to have been rustled were arrested along Jibia – Katsina road and Gusau – Zaria road respectively, stressing that the arrested cattle and suspects have been handed over to Katsina State Police Command and Zamfara State Association of Rustled Animals, Gusau for necessary action.
“Meanwhile all arrested suspects are currently in custody undergoing preliminary investigation and will soon be handed over to relevant prosecuting authorities for further action and possible prosecution “