The Nigerian Military on Thursday outlined some of its recent successes against bandits roaming the country’s North-West region.
In a press statement signed by Acting Director Defence Media Operations Bernard Onyeuko said its Operation Sahel Sanity have recovered cattle and arrested suspected bandits in the past few days.
The full statement:
1. In line with the efforts to achieve the mandate of eliminating bandits and other criminals in the North West zone of the country, the gallant troops of Operation SAHEL SANITY have recorded more successes in the on going operation.
2. On 5 August 2020, troops deployed in Batsari LGA of Katsina State foiled a coordinated bandits attack on residents of Zamfarawa Kagara village in the State. The bandits invaded the village and stole several cows but while attempting to escape with them, troops arrived the vicinity and engaged the bandits, neutralized one, while others escaped with gunshot wounds. All the rustled cows were successfully recovered and handed to their rightful owners.
3. Similarly, On 6 August 2020, troops deployed at Forward Operation Base Dangulbi arrested a suspected bandit informant named Rabiu Salisu, the suspect was arrested following credible information on his nefarious activities with bandits operating in the area. Also, troops deployed at the Forward Operations Base Bagega arrested two bandits’ collaborators named Sani Sani and Sani Abubakar who were reported to be specialists in selling of bandits’ stolen cows and other items. They were arrested while butchering a cow for sale and have since confessed to collecting it from the bandits during interrogation.
4. Furthermore, troops recovered 17 cows from suspected cattle rustlers at Dogon Ruwa village. The cows were recovered from suspected bandits who abandon them and fled as troops storm the village following information of their activities from reliable sources.
5. In another development, troops on fighting patrol arrested a suspected bandit’s informant and logistics supplier named Saifullahi Adamu at Garin Dodo village in Katsina State, the suspect was arrested following credible information about his elicit engagements with suspected bandits. His wife Mrs Hauwa Abubakar also alleged that the suspect forcefully married her, whereas bandits whom her husband associates with usually accuse her of reporting their activities to security agencies thereby subjecting her to several abuses. Mrs Hauwa was rescued from her husband and has been handed over to the Katsina State Government while the suspect is in own custody for further interogation.
6. Similarly, on the 7 August 2020, troops deployed at Forward Operation Base Anka while on patrol arrested 2 suspected bandits’ couriers named Abdulrazi and Ismaila at Malamawa village in Anka LGA of Zamfara State in connection with butchering and selling of stolen cows. Furthermore, troops arrested another 3 suspected bandits’ couriers named Hassan Mallam, Kabiru Ahmadu and Surajo Muhammadu of Sabon Birni and Munhaye villages at Pasawa-Magami Road of Zamfara State. All the suspects are presently undergoing investigation.
7. Additionally, on the 7 August 2020 troops deployed at Tsafe LGA of Zamfara State responded to information on the activities of cattle rustlers and quickly mobilized to the area. The criminals abandoned their loot on sensing approaching troops who recovered 8 cattles in the process which were immediately handed over to their rightful owners. Also, same day troops arrested a suspected bandit named Sabiu Sani. Investigations revealed that suspect was previously arrested by vigilante group but escaped from custody. In another operation following a tip-off troops deployed in Faskari equally arrested 5 suspected bandits in a blue Hyundai car with registration number Katsina 107 BAK. The suspects are presently undergoing interrogation.
8. Furthermore, on 8 August 2020, troops arrested one suspected cattle rustler named Sallahu Rabiu at Natsinta Village with 3 rustled cows. Suspect confessed to have been operating with a gang of cattle rustlers. Efforts are ongoing to apprehend other members of his gang. Also, troops deployed at Wagini arrested a suspected bandit name Usman Suleiman. The suspect was apprehended after being sighted by the eagle eyed troops while trying to sneak into the village from the forest in search of food. He admitted to be part of a bandit group terrorizing Batsari general area.
9. On 9 August 2020, troops deployed at Mara arrested 2 suspected bandits named Jamilu Mani and Aminu Lawal along Danmusa – Runka Road, suspected were identified to be notorious bandits terrorizing the area. In the same vain, troops deployed at Bingi while on patrol arrested a suspected bandit and impostor named Sani Saidu wearing a police uniform with the name tag bearing “ James Oname”. Preliminary investigation revealed that James Oname a Police Sergeant was killed in 2015 by bandits at Tunga Rakumi in Maru LGA of Zamfara State. The suspect is undergoing further interrogation. Relatedly, same day troops on clearance patrol destroyed 8 major bandits camps owned by notorious bandits leader known as Abu-Radde at Lebi Fulani Areas in Batsari LGA of Katsina. Troops during the operation recovered 4 dane guns and other items.
10. In another development, On 10 August 2020, troops deployed at Yarsanta while on routine patrol intercepted a kidnapped escapee named Auwal Yusuf wandering aimlessly along Yarsanta-Kabuge general area. The victim was promptly rescued by the troops and taken to safety. Similarly troops on patrol encountered suspected bandits with rustled cows along Bagega – Sabon Birni, bandits opened fire on sighting the troops but fled into the bushes as troops responded with superior firepower. During exploitation, troops found traces of blood along bandits escape route while 12 cows were recovered by the troops.
11. Also, on 11 August 2020, troops at Forward Operation Base Yar Gamji in Batsari while conducting farm patrol arrested a suspected bandit named Ibrahim Musa. During preliminary interrogation, the suspect confessed to be on a spy mission and a member of a bandit group led by one criminal named Danladi Dahiru hiding in Dumburum forest. Same day, troops arrested a suspected bandit named Bello Haliru along Batsari – Sawara Road following a deligent tracking by the troops. Suspect was identified to be a notorious bandit who escaped from vigilante custody during a previous arrest.
12. Consequently, the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Yusufu Buratai has commended the troops for their gallantry, successes and their resilience. He urges them not to rest on their oars. He further assured the people of the North-West zone of the Nigerian Army’s commitment to the safety of lives and properties within the zone.
DSS Summon Father Mbaka to Abuja For Questioning
Operatives of the Department of State Services have summoned controversial priest, Ejike Mbaka, to Abuja for questioning.
The DSS operatives visited the church to drop the letter of invitation. However, they didn’t meet the cleric at the church premises.
Details of why the intelligence unit summoned the priest were not stated but it might not be unconnected with Mbaka’s criticism of the Buhari government in recent times.
Mbaka, the Spiritual Director, Adoration Ministry Enugu, has attracted attention lately with his criticism of President Muhammadu Buhari government.
It will be recalled that the priest recently said God had rejected the President and unhappy with his leadership.
Reacting to the summon in a video obtained , Mbaka said, “I got a call that the DSS people from Abuja came here (Enugu) with a letter of invitation to Abuja. Over what? What I cannot understand is that the mother church in Nigeria should be “cowed down” to lilliputian.
“The church is a lion and lamb. The bible says if the foundation is destroyed, what can the righteous do. Every priest is a prophet and a king. We must protect the sheep. In this time, when killings are every day story, when there is hunger everywhere, people do not have hope again. The only hope I have is God. Anybody who will stop people from worshipping here will regret it.
“I am the servant here. They don’t understand history. I spoke against Abacha. I went to Minna to tell Babangida what was wrong in his time. I spoke to Obasanjo face to face. I perform under the anointing of the Holy Spirit. I ministered to the late President Yaradua. I am being used by a higher being called the Holy Spirit.
“If they are attacking me here and there, no wahala (no problem). The Bible says if God is for us, who can be against us? Only God can be God. I heard the security people did not accept the letter. They asked them to come on Monday to give me the letter. If they know the anointing here is too hot for them, let them change. I will not keep quiet.”
Bandits Kill 26 in Deadly Attack on Zamfara State
Bandits have killed 26 persons including a police officer in another deadly attack on some communities in Bungudu Local Government Area of Zamfara State on Saturday.
The spokesperson of the Zamfara Police Command, Shehu Mohammed explained that the assailants were armed with sophisticated weapons and invaded Tofa village in large numbers, shooting sporadically and killing some of the villagers.
Shehu noted that the gunmen were on their way to carry out another attack in Samawa when they were engaged in a gun battle with the police tactical operatives stationed in the village.
Some of the bandits, he said, were wounded in the duel. The attackers were said to be returning to the community on Saturday, preventing the villagers from burying their own.
The latest assault on the northwestern state follows a similar incident in the area on Thursday where 12 farmers were killed and nine others severely wounded.
Channels TV gathered that the armed bandits launched the attack when the farmers were in their respective farmlands trying to clear their lands in preparation for this year’s farming activities.
The incident which took place in Magami and Mayaba communities in Gusau local government area of Zamfara State saw the bandits also carting away livestock and other valuables.
It was also said that the twelve persons killed were buried according to Islamic rites while those injured are receiving treatment in an undisclosed hospital.
A day before the incident, bandits had attacked a Fulani settlement on the outskirts of Anka town along the Bagega-Anka Road in Zamfara State.
Sources disclosed that the armed men stormed the area at about 5 pm on Wednesday and began to shoot sporadically.
But the bandits were engaged in a gun duel by the policemen who were stationed in a mining company along the road, an eyewitness said on Thursday.
He stated that no life was lost in the attack, but the bandits rustled an unspecified number of cows belonging to members of the community.
The witness said a motorcycle belonging to the leader of Fulani in Anka was also set ablaze by the armed bandits.
ISWAP Confirms Shekau’s Death, Says He Blew Himself Up
The Islamic State West African Province (ISWAP) has confirmed the death of former Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau, saying he blew himself up after refusing to surrender when his hideout was invaded on Wednesday, May 19.
This was contained in a message from ISWAP leader, Abu Musab Albarnawi, whose recording was obtained by HumAngle, an online medium.
According to the HumAngle report, Abu Musab Albarnawi, in his address which was delivered in Hausa, described Shekau as the leader of disobedience and corruption, saying his fighters rejoiced over his death. He said the former terrorist leader who took over after the death of Boko Haram founder Mohammed Yusuf in 2009, was apprehended “in the most humiliating manner.”
Albarnawi said: “This was someone who committed unimaginable terrorism. How many had he wasted? How many had he killed? How many had he terrorised? But Allah left him alone and prolonged his life. When it was time, Allah set out brave soldiers after receiving orders from Amirul Muminin (leader of the believers),” he said.
ISWAP, which broke away from Shekau’s Boko Haram faction in 2016, disagreed with the late extremist leader over his excessive use of force, especially on Muslims in areas under his influence.
According to Abu Musab Albarnawi, the interim leader of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) ordered them to take action on Shekau for deviating and killing “believers.”
ISWAP fighters then took their arms, travelled through the Sahara, went into Shekau’s enclave, and engaged in a gun battle with his followers.
He initially escaped and roamed the bushes of Sambisa for five days, where he suffered seriously. However, ISWAP fighters were able to locate him.
Abu Musab narrated how Shekau managed to run away a second time but was chased down. The rival fighters urged him and his followers to repent, assuring him that if the ISIS leader decided to make him their leader after he surrendered, they would have no choice but to obey.
He added: “Shekau preferred to be humiliated in the afterlife than getting humiliated on earth.” He killed himself instantly by detonating an explosive, exactly as HumAngle reported a day after the incident.
Abu Musab urged ISWAP fighters in Lake Chad not to sit idly and watch a sub-faction of Boko Haram still loyal to Shekau invade their homes, kill and abduct their wives and children, and turn them into slaves.
He urged the rival terror group to choose dialogue against fighting; saying however that their end would be soon if they choose war and terrorism.
“Haven’t you seen what happened to your leader who had more strength, more experience than you, yet he was defeated?”, Abu Musab said.
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