In a statement by the Acting Director Defence Media Operations Brigadier General BENARD ONYEUKO, the gallant troops have relentlessly redoubled their efforts in this regard recording more successes against the bandits.The statement in full:
As the dry season gradually sets in the North-West zone, troops of Operation SAHEL SANITY have stepped up operation as they continue to push into the remote and hitherto in-accessible areas due to unfavorable terrain with devastating effect on the marauding criminals.
Consequently, 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 leading to the neutralization of 3 bandits, while many others escaped with varying degrees of gunshot wounds. In the aftermath of 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 8 bandits hideouts were destroyed insitu so far while the operation is still on going.
Similarly, in a covert operation based on credible intelligence, 4 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 2 kidnapped victims during a clearance operation to identified bandits hideout at Dan Umaru, Rancho and Dan Duniya villages. Many of the bandits managed to escape with various degrees of gunshot wounds. 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. 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.
Relatedly, 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 2 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 victims were reunited with their families while efforts are intensified to track the criminal gang members.
To this end, the gallant troops of Operation SAHEL SANITY are 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 are equally encouraged to continue to avail the troops with credible information that will assist them in the operation.