By Sumaila Ogbaje, Abuja.
Troops of Operation Hadarin Daji have apprehended five collaborators of bandits at Daudawa village, Faskari Local Government Area of Katsina State, with the sum of N19.5 million in their possession.
The Director of Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. Musa Danmadami, said this at the bi-weekly update on military operations across the country on Thursday in Abuja.
Danmadami said that the arrest was made on Nov. 17 during a stop-and-search operation, adding that the troops also seized a vehicle and five mobile phones from the suspects.
He said the troops also neutralised three bandits at Yambuki village in Zurmi Local Government Area of Zamfara on Nov. 20, while others fled with gunshot wounds.
Danmadami said that the troops also recovered 91 link rounds of 7.62mm NATO, 30 rounds of 7.62mm special, two AK47 rifles and three motorcycles.
He added that troops also arrested a suspected gunrunner with 269 rounds of 7.62mm special in his possession, while on his way from Zaria to Damari village in Birnin Magaji Local Government Area of Zamfara.
“Consequently, between Nov. 17 and Nov. 30, troops recovered eight AK47 rifles, 332 rounds of 7.62mm special, 91 link rounds of 7.62mm NATO ammunition, and five dane guns.
“Troops equally neutralised 11 bandits, arrested 10 and rescued 9 civilians during the period.”
The defence spokesman said that the air component of the operation on Nov. 18 carried out strikes on the enclave of notorious terrorist leader and gunrunner, Malam Illa, at Manawa village in Shinkafi Local Government Area of Zamfara.
“Following the air strike on the location, it was confirmed that seven terrorists were neutralized, while Mallam Illa and some terrorists narrowly escaped with critical injuries,” he said.
In the North Central, Danmadami said that troops of Operation Safe Haven, on Nov. 28, apprehended a suspected gunrunner with five locally fabricated AK47 rifles, concealed in a bag, at Gidan Ado in Riyom Local Government Area of Plateau.
He also said troops of Operation Whirl Stroke arrested five suspected criminals, while on fighting patrols to Kwazaye, Shelena and Ukande villages in Katsina-Ala Local Government Area of Benue.
He said that that the arrested criminals were revealed to be foot soldiers of a notorious bandit leader, Iorkoso Tyopaha, operating within Kaamen village.
“Also, four suspected bandits’ informants were arrested at Sankara Junction in Ukum Local Government Area of Benue.
“Equally on Nov. 23, military troops, in conjunction with the Nigerian Police personnel, arrested a suspected criminal at Apo Mechanic Village in Abuja Municipal Area Council in possession of one AK47 rifle and a pistol concealed in a bag inside his vehicle,” he said.
Danmadami also said that troops, in conjunction with other security agencies conducted joint raid operations at Guzape, Apo and Area 1 District in Abuja Municipal Area Council.
He added that the raids led to the arrest of 21 suspected criminals, while over 200 motorcycles were seized and destroyed during the operations.
He said that the troops had within the weeks under focus rescued nine civilians, neutralised three criminals and apprehended 54 criminals.