Ahead of off-season and 2023 General Elections, the Chief of Defence Staff(CDS), Lucky Irabor has charged all Nigerians to work towards a peaceful electioneering period in the country.
The CDS who spoke at the biweekly press briefing by directorate of defence media operations on armed forces of nigeria’s military operations, on Thursday, in Abuja said the Nigerian Military in collaboration with other security agencies are assiduously working to ensure peace and adequate security during the electioneering season.
He urged all political aspirants seeking for elective positions in the country to do it within the ambit of the law and devoid of violence.
The CDS however warned that the military will not tolerate or allow anyone to fuel violence under the guise of elections in Nigeria, while urging all to support the military and other security agencies in their quest to promote peaceful existence in the country.
The CDS stated that “going forward Nigeria must be peaceful, so that all Nigerians will have a country to be proud of.
‘’The military will ensure that the country has a peaceful electioneering period, so that every one of us will have a country we can be proud of.
‘’For everyone that is looking forward to political appointments, we will not stand aside and look at those that will perpetrate violence all because they are looking for political offices. Going forward Nigeria must be peaceful”.
Also speaking on the recent attack on the ancient city of Owo in Ondo State, the CDS said the military is not resting on its oars in ensuring that the criminals behind the menace are brought to justice.
He also appealed to Nigerians to give timely information to the military in order to avoid such occurrence in future.
Meanwhile, the Director of Defence Media Operations, Major General Benard Onyeuko briefed the media on the achievements of the military in their various operations across the country
covering between 2 to 16 June 2022.
According to Major General Onyeuko, “The Joint Task Force of Operation DELTA SAFE has been relentless in their kinetic operation which are geared towards eradicating illegal oil activities in their Joint Operational area. In other to achieve its operational mandate.
“Operation OCTOPUS GRIP a subsidiary operation under DELTA SAFE in the last 7 weeks of it operations (April 20) discovered and destroyed 337 illegal oil refineries, 1,052 metal storage tanks, 515 ovens, 68 wooden boats, it also confiscated 59 vehicles, 16 outboard engines, 11 rifles and arrested 141 criminals”.
He disclosed the troops of DELTAL SAFE in the conduct of Operation OCTOPUS GRIP during the period under review, conducted operations in creeks, towns and communities. Which he highlighted to include Jesse in Ethiope Local Government Area, Otagbo Creek, Escravos River and Benett Island in Delta State. Also, Brass creek, Beneside and Ndoro Waterways Ekeremor all in Bayelsa State.
The DMO also revelaed that troops of Operation of HADIN KAI has continued to sustain the operational tempo against the insurgents and terrorists in the North West.
“Notably, on 12 June 2022 troops had an-encounter with Boko Haram terrorists as they cleared their enclave in Gazuwa in Bama Local Government Area.
“The camp which is called Markas or Headquarters harboured large of the terrorists and their families. After a fierce battle about 47 terrorists were neutralized including their top commanders.
“Also, on 14 June 2022, troops of 26 Task Force Brigade on clearance operation at Ngoshe Borno State intercepted one of the abducted Chibok girls by name Miss Mary Dauda, 27 years old with her child. She is suspected to have escaped from Gara in Gwoza Local Government Area of Borno State. Mary Dauda is on serial 46 on the Chibok girls list of 2014. The rescued mother and child are in own custody for medical checkup and rehabilitation” he affirmed.
Another achievement noted is the rescue of 5 abducted victims who were kidnapped by the terrorists.
“Earlier in the day, terrorists had set ablaze 2 PMS tankers and 2 other vehicles. This was achieved in conjunction with Air Component of who engaged the terrorists with helicopter gunship some of the criminals were neutralized and the 3 gun trucks abandoned by the terrorists were recovered.
“Boko Haram terrorists and their families have continued to surrender to own troops in the North East theatre. Cumulatively a total of 57,004 of Boko Haram Terrorists and their families have surrendered comprising of 12,547 males, 17,027 females and 27,430 children. All surrendered and items recovered have been handed over to the appropriate authorities for further action” the DMO added.
Troops Under the WHIRL PUNCH theatre of operation according to Major General Onyeuko “has continued to sustain offensive attacks on bandits and other criminal elements to checkmate their unlawful activities with operational patrols, clearance and raid operations as they conducted operational activities at Rigasa, Faka, Kurmin Dade, Galbi, Kawuri, Kusasu, Kuduru, Keterma, Dan Guru, Sarkin Pawa, Godani station at Gwagwada in Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State.
“On 2 June 2022, based on credible intelligence report on terrorists activities, and the sighting of major terrorists enclaves at Golibi and Kawuri, the Intelligence Surveillance Reconnaissance (ISR) also uncovered movement of armed terrorists on motorcycles from gwagwada in Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State. Consequently, the air component in a coordinated strike engaged the terrorists and neutralized key leaders of the terrorists and destroyed their warehouse.
“In a similar operation, on 5 June 2022 following report on terrorists attack at Dogon Noma in Kajuru Local Government Area of Kaduna State, on arrival, it was discovered that the village was on fire, however, no terrorist was seen. Further exploit of the general area revealed terrorists on convoy of 30 motorcycles carrying 3 persons each and fleeing to nearby clusters of trees. Consequently, the terrorists were engaged by Nigerian Air Force platform with scores of the terrorists neutralized and the motorcycles engulfed in flames after the strike”.
Consequently, the DMO spokesperson noted that “Within the last week 9 – 14 June 2022, a total of 26 illegal refining sites, 35 wooden boats, 74 storage tanks, 79 ovens, 28 dug out pits, 3 speed boats, 2 outboard engines, 20 pumping machines, 2 rifles, Two Million Two Hundred and Sixty Four Thousand (2,264,000) litres of stolen crude oil, One Million One Hundred and Forty Two Thousand (1,142,000) litres of AGO and 10 oil thieves were arrested by own troops”.
The arrested criminals and recovered items according to the defence headquarters, have been handed over to the appropriate authorities for further action.
The military high command also commended efforts of the troops in the various theatres, encouraging them to sustain the operational tempo in their respective area of responsibilities and to ensure that normalcy returns to the affected zones of the country.