By Mohammed Munirat Nasir:
Troops of Exercise Sahel Sanity flagged off by Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt. General Tukur Yusuf Buratai have killed scores of bandits and rescued many kidnapped victims and ammunitions.
Briefing journalists at the Nigerian Army Super Camp IV in Faskari town on Sunday, the Acting Director, Defence Media Operations, Defence Headquarters, Abuja, Brig. General Bernard Onyeuko said Operation Sahel Sanity which commenced on 6th July, is aimed to aggressively route out armed bandits, cattle rustlers, kidnappers and other criminal elements from the North West zone.
Onyeuko said few hours after the inauguration of the operation, the troops got a call bandits in Yar Gamji in Batsari Local Gvernment Area, Katsina state which made the troops quickly mobilised and engaged the criminals neutralizing scores in the process.
“Troops deployed at Gidan Baure in Jibiya Local Government Area rescued 3 young girls kidnapped by armed bandits at Sayau village. The rescued girls have been handed over to the Katsina State,” he said.
He said the troops also engaged bandits at Magira, Makwaruwa, Garin Damo, Kasale Made, Dadin Kowa, Gangara and Shadama in Sabon Birni and Isa Local Government Areas of Sokoto State, the troops mobilized to the area and pursued the bandits killing two of the fleeing bandits while many others escaped with gunshot wounds.
“The troops arrested one Mallam Halilu Ibrahim a bandit informant and seller of rustled cattle’s who was about to display some stolen cattle’s for sale. The troops also arrested one Mallam Sani Sada from Katsale village in Isa Local Government Area of Sokoto State who later confessed to be among Turji boys (a notorious bandits leader) who commissioned them to kill and rustle cows in the area,” he said.
General Onyeuko said the troops intercepted bandits with large number of rustled cattle’s from Jangemi village forest to Kwaren Ganuwa in Zamfara state.
“The troops sprang an ambush at Gidan Jaja in Zurmi Local Government Area of Zamfara State the bandits fled with heavy gunshot wounds abandoning One AK 47 rifle in the process. Similarly while on an aggressive mobile patrol, own troops intercepted 3 armed bandits who opened fire on troops. During the fire fight, one of the bandits was neutralized while others fled in disarray,” he said
He added that the troops also arrested two bandits informants/ logistics suppliers and dealers in rustled cows named Mallam Kabiru Sahabi and Abubakar Yusuf.
“In summary within the period under review, due to the aggressive clearance operations and posture adopted by the troops, troops rescued 8 kidnapped victims, a total of 711 cows, 592 sheep/rams, large cache of ammunition, guns and local dane guns, motorcycles and other assorted items have been recovered by troops of Operation SAHEL SANITY,” he said.