From Maiharaji Altine Gusau
Troops of Operation Sahel Sanity have killed three bandits, rescued 26 kidnapped victims and arrested a drug pedlar in North Western Zone.
This was stated in statement issued to newsmen in Gusau today by the Acting Director Defence Media Operations, Brigadier General Benard Onyeuko.
General Onyeuko said “Between 4-9 October 2020, combined troops of Operation SAHEL SANITY, elements of 17 Brigade and Sector 9 Operation Hadarin Daji conducted a combined aggressive clearance operation to identified bandit’s enclaves at Dankar, Kandawa, Yau yau, Hayin Yau yau, Bugaje, Zandam, Kwari Mai Zurfi, Yar Gamji, Bukuru and Jibiyawa in Batsari and Jibiya LGAs of Katsina State.
“During the operations, three bandits were neutralized, while many others escaped with varying degrees of gunshot wounds”.
He maintained that during the encounter, the gallant troops captured one AK 47 magazine loaded with 25 rounds of 7.62mm special ammunition and one dane gun belonging to the fleeing bandits while one bandit’s motorcycle and eight bandits hideouts were destroyed so far, while the operation is still on going.
Similarly, in a covert operation based on credible intelligence, four suspected bandits were arrested at Kankara and Tudu village of Kankara LGA of Katsina state including a suspected bandit leader named *Mujitafa Shehu*.
In another development, on 5 October 2020, troops deployed at Forward Operation Base Bena in Wasagu-Danko LGA of Kebbi state, in conjunction with troops of 223 Battalion deployed at Wasagu and Unashi rescued two kidnapped victims during a clearance operation to identified bandits hideout at Dan Umaru, Rancho and Dan Duniya villages.
According to him Many of the bandits managed to escape with various degrees of gunshot wounds adding that rescued victims have since been reunited with their families amid jubilation by locals.
“Also, on the same day, following a tip-off, troops of Forward Operation Base Jengebe arrested a suspected drug peddler, one Mubarak Shehu at Jengebe Check Point in Wanki District of Gusau LGA”. Said Onyeuko.
He said, the suspect was caught with 20 packets of Pentazocine injection concealed in his motorcyle while on transit to deliver item at Kungurmi village of Bungudu LGA.
“Preliminary investigation revealed the drug baron is a member of the cartel that supplies hard drugs to bandits in the forest”.
Also on 6 October 2020, troops deployed at Yar Santa in Kankara LGA of Katsina State rescued a female Kidnapped victim in Kankara LGA. Rescued victim has been reunited with her family.
Furthermore, troops raided and destroyed bandits’ camps during a clearance operation at Garin Inu, Shekewa Forest, Jajaye, Kerewa, Solar, Mallamawa and Gobirawa in Katsina State. Items recovered during the operation include two Dane guns and assorted items.
In another development, on 9 October 2020, troops deployed at Forward Operation Base Magami while responding to a distress call rescued 23 kidnapped victims from fleeing bandits who abandoned the captives as the unrelenting troops were closing in on their hideout along Zauni-Jengebe road in Gusau LGA of Zamfara state.
Preliminary investigation revealed that the victims were kidnapped while on transit to Magami Market from Gusau in a passenger bus.
All the rescued according to Onyeuko were reunited with their families while efforts were intensified to track the criminal gang members.
The troops were commended for the remarkable successes achieved in the intensified operation and their commitment to duty.
They are further urged not to rest on their oars until banditry and other sundry crimes are totally eliminated in the North-West. While the people of the North-West are once more assured of troops commitment to the safety of lives and property within the zone.
They were equally encouraged to continue to avail the troops with credible information that would assist them in the operation.