In a remarkable display of operational effectiveness, Nigerian troops engaged in counter-terrorism efforts have achieved substantial success in neutralizing threats posed by terrorists, kidnappers, and criminal elements within the country.
The Director of Defence Media Operations, Major Gen Edward Buba, provided an update on Friday, revealing impressive outcomes from military operations conducted in the initial five days of 2024.
Terrorist Neutralization: Troops successfully neutralized 43 terrorists during various encounters, enhancing the overall security landscape.
Arrests: A total of 132 individuals, including oil theft perpetrators, were apprehended, contributing to law enforcement efforts to dismantle criminal networks.
Rescue Operations: In operations aimed at rescuing kidnapped civilians, troops successfully retrieved 39 individuals who had fallen victim to criminal activities.
Weapon and Ammunition
Recovery: The military recovered a substantial arsenal, comprising 87 assorted weapons and 666 assorted ammunition, thereby reducing the firepower available to criminal elements.
Niger Delta Operations:
Illegal Crude Oil Refining Sites: Troops in the Niger Delta region discovered and destroyed 25 illegal crude oil refining sites, curbing illegal activities that contribute to environmental degradation.
Assets Destroyed: The military efforts led to the destruction of 24 cooking ovens, 29 boats, 31 storage tanks, one tricycle, and three pump machines used by criminals involved in oil theft.
Financial Impact: The military thwarted oil theft criminals from stealing an estimated sum of N159.65 million, enhancing financial security and reducing the illicit gains of criminal networks.
Recovered Items: Troops successfully recovered 315,700 litres of stolen crude oil, 1,200 litres of illegally refined AGO, and 3,158 litres of DPK, further disrupting illegal activities in the region.
Weapons and Ammunition Seizure:
Firearms: The military confiscated 11 AK47 rifles, one FN rifle, 2 pump-action guns, 8 locally fabricated guns, 11 Dane guns, 2 locally fabricated pistols, one Macarrol pistol, one Beretta pistol, and one fabricated SMG.
Ammunition: A significant quantity of ammunition was seized, including 17 rounds of 7.62mm NATO, 592 rounds of 7.62mm special ammo, 4 rounds of 7.5mm ammo, one round of 9mm ammo, and 36 live cartridges.
Explosive Devices: Four improvised explosive devices (IEDs) were recovered, enhancing safety and preventing potential threats.
Recovered Funds: The military seized the sum of N1,601,370.00, preventing criminals from accessing illicit financial gains.
Gen Buba said, “The armed forces remain focussed and is continuing its counter-insurgency campaign against terrorist and their cohorts operating across the country.
“Our operations have prevented these evil elements from accomplishing their strategic objectives.
“Accordingly, troops are hunting terrorists in their hiding places and conducting targetted offensives against them to destroy them.
“Combat teams have neutralised several of the terrorist leadership and their foot soldiers as well as degraded their military capabilities.
“We assure you that we will defeat the terrorists on the battlefield and in their hiding places in order that our country can flourish again.
“We have no choice but to win this war for the betterment of our nation.
“We call on the public to continue to act responsibly and be forthcoming for the progress of our nation.
”Citizens are urged to see themselves as the outstretched arm of the military in this war and to create conditions that would hasten victory.”
The ongoing efforts demonstrate a proactive approach to maintaining peace and stability within the country.