The Nigerian troops have killed 60 bandits, including their leader, popularly known as ‘Emir’ in Zamfara State and recovered 400 cows.
The success was recorded by troops of Operation HADARIN DAJI (OPHD), in a bid to clear Zamfara of criminal elements/unrepentant bandits.
Captain Ayobami Oni-Orisan, Acting Force Information Officer, in a statement on Saturday recalled that on 3rd of October 2019, troops deployed at SUNKE in ANKA Local Government Area, came under unprovoked attack by armed bandits despite the ongoing peace process in the State and that however, the gallant troops successfully repelled the attack, killed 19 bandits in the process. while unfortunately, four soldiers lost their lives during the encounter.
“As a result of the encounter, troops further commenced aggressive clearance operations nicknamed OP MUSHARE on the 6th of October 2019, with a view to apprehending the recalcitrant bandits. Consequently, between 6th and 7th of October 2019, within BAWA DAJI general area, 3 heavily fortified camps at GUBARAWA, BAWA DAJI and BAWA DAJI Forest were destroyed when the troops overpowered the bandits, overrun the 3 camps and neutralized 39 bandits, (including the notorious bandits’ leader known as “Emir”) and many bandits were obviously wounded,” he said.
The following items were recovered from the bandits/camps:3 AK 47 rifles, 421 7.62mm (special) ammunition, 30 PKT rifle rounds, 10 magazines, 5 motorcycles, 177 cows, 7 handsets, 2 handset batteries, a substance suspected to be Cannabis Sativa and charms while four soldiers were wounded during the operation.
Oni-Orisan added that in continuation with the offensive against the bandits, clearance operations were also extended to the general area of KURUWA, KAWARA, KALAHE and ZANGO villages in BAKURA Local Government Area where troops encountered a large number of marauders at their camp in ZANGO village on 8 October 2019, saying that the determined troops overwhelmed the armed bandits with a high volume of fire, neutralized 19 of the criminals and recovered one motorcycle.
“Additionally, troops also arrested a suspected bandit, Abubakar Umar along road LAMBA – DAMRI axis with the sum of N400,000 presumably for purchase of bandits logistics supplies. The suspect will be handed over to the civil police for further investigation/necessary action.
“Additionally, on the 8th of October 2019, troops on fighting patrol in BUKKUYUM general area intercepted some logistics items en route to bandits’ camps. The items include 13 Jerry cans of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), 8 litres of engine oil and 4 motorcycle tyre tubes.
“Furthermore, on the 9th of October 2019, troops deployed in ANKA general area, based on intelligence intercepted and arrested suspected bandits’ logistics suppliers named LAWALI UMAR AND JAMILU LIMAN around KUTURU village in Anka Local Government Area of the State purchasing some logistics items for onward movement to the bandits’ camps. Consequently, the troops recovered the under-listed items: 4 jerry cans of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), 1 carton of Malt, 3 packets of soft drinks and1 packet of Nutri milk.
“In a related development, based on intelligence indicating that armed bandits were seen crossing with some rustled cows at DAKI TAKWAS in ANKA Local Government Area, OPHD troops deployed in the general area immediately ambushed the criminals along road ANKA-DAKI TAKWAS. The criminals fled and abandoned the rustled cows in the area. Troops pursued the fleeing criminals and successfully neutralized 20 of them,” he disclosed.
Oni-Orisan said presently, troops had dominated the general area with aggressive patrols, snap checkpoints and ambushes among other lines of operations to deny the criminals freedom of action.
“This onslaught against armed banditry and all other criminal activities will continue until banditry is effectively combated. Troops will continue to remain highly committed and professional in carrying out assigned tasks in line with the extant Rules of Engagement and Code of Conduct.