- Good morning senior officers, officers and gentlemen of the press. On behalf of the Chief of Defence Staff, I welcome you all once again to the Defence Headquarters conference room for the biweekly briefing on troops activities and operational successes being recorded in the various operational theaters within the 6 geo-political zones of the Country. In the past 2 weeks, both kinetic and non-kinetic operations were conducted in the various theatres of operations, with significant results recorded. The brief will therefore cover operational activities of the Armed Forces of Nigeria and other security agencies conducted in addressing the various security challenges across the Country between the period of 12 – 26 January 2023.
NORTH EAST ZONE
- Troops of Operation HADIN KAI have sustained and continue to dominate their general areas of operation. Operational activities were conducted in villages, forest, mountains, towns and cities of Kukawa, Bama, Biu, Damboa, Maiduguri, Mafa, Dikwa, Gwoza, Kaga, Abadam as well as Monguno Local Government Areas of Borno State. Operations were also conducted at Madagali Local Government Area of Adamawa State and Gujiba, Geidam and Damaturu Local Government Areas of Yobe States in the North East region of the country geared towards denying Boko Haram/Islamic State of West Africa Province and other criminal element freedom of actions and restore normalcy to the zone. Notably, on 12 January 2023 troops had a meeting engagement with Boko Haram/Islamic State of West Africa Province terrorists close to their locations in kwatan Turare and Azir Bri villages in Kukawa and Damboa Local Government Areas of Borno State. During the encounter, troops engaged the terrorists in a fire fight and neutralized 5 terrorists while other fled with gunshot injuries. Troops, recovered 3 AK47 rifles, 2 x 60mm mortar bombs, 36 rounds of belted 7.62mm NATO, 7 x 60mm mortar chargers, empty cases of 60mm bomb chargers, empty cases of RPG chargers, 2 RPG 7 bomb, 1 Gun truck, 2 PKGM, 2 RPG bombs, 1 QJC gun, 116 rounds of 12.7mm AP ammunition and 56 rounds of 7.62mm rimmed ammunition, while 1 phantom MRAP used by the terrorist was destroyed by own fire.
- Also, troops on 14 January 2023 ambushed Boko Haram/Islamic State of West Africa Province terrorists close to Zanwa village in Gwoza Local Government Area of Borno State. Following a fire fight, troops neutralized 7 terrorists, while other fled. Troops recovered 3 AK47, 2 locally fabricated guns, 15 rounds of 7.62mm special refilled ammo, 1 camel bag, 1 G3 rifle and 19 rounds of 7.62mm NATO ammunition. On the same date troops ambushed Boko Haram/Islamic State of West Africa Province terrorists along Rd Banki – Bula Yobe – Darel Jamel in Bama LGA and made contact. Following a fire fight, troops neutralized 3 terrorists and recovered, 2 AK 47 rifles, 15 rounds of 7.62 mm Special refilled ammo and one camel bag among other sundry items. Additionally, on 13 January 2023, 2 Boko Haram/Islamic State of West Africa Province terrorists surrendered to own troops at Banki Junction in Bama Local Government Area with 2 AK47 rifles, one FN rifle, 12 rounds of 7.62mm special, 6 rounds of 7.62mm refilled ammunition, one mobile phone and sum of 15,000.00 only. Equally, troops raided a Boko Haram/Islamic State of West Africa Province terrorist’s enclave in Bula Tamsu village ahead of Ngurusoye in Bama Local Government Area and made contact with the terrorists. Troops engaged and neutralized 2 terrorists while, 2 bicycles were recovered and 6 kidnapped civilians rescued.
- Between 20 to 25 January 2023, troops conducted ambush operations to Loskori, Maina Hari villages in Mafa and Biu Local Government Areas of Borno State. During the operation, troops neutralized 8 terrorists, apprehended 5 armed herders, 2 suspected vandals, 5 bandits and 4 terrorist logistics suppliers. Items recovered include; 2 QJC AA guns, 4 Ak47 rifles, 2 Ak47 magazines and 216 rounds of 12.7mm AP ammunition. Troops also recovered 10 rustled goats, 1 cow, 7 bicycles, 4 motorcycles, 2 vehicles, 4 wrappers, 8 mats, 6 packs of cotton bias, 2 sacks of high tension accessories, 1 jack knife amongst other sundry items.
- Cumulatively, within the last 2 weeks, troops in the North East Region recovered 12 AK47 rifles, 2 locally fabricated guns, 1 FN rifle, 1 G3 rifle, 3 QJC gun, 2 x 60mm mortar bombs, 36 rounds of belted 7.62mm NATO, 7 x 60mm mortar chargers, 4 RPG 7 bombs, 1 phantom MRAP, 2 PKGM, 1 gun truck, 332 rounds of 12.7mm AP ammunition, 56 rounds of 7.62 rimmed ammunition, 21 rounds of 7.62mm special refilled ammunition, 19 rounds of 7.62mm NATO, 34 rounds of 7.62mm special, 14 AK47 magazines, 2 vehicles, 9 bicycles, 4 motorcycles, 1 mobile, phones and the sum of N15,000.00 only and other sundry items. Troops equally neutralized 42 terrorists, arrested 5 terrorists, 9 terrorists logistics suppliers, 2 suspected vandals, 5 bandits as well as 5 armed herders. Troops also rescued 6 adopted civilians while a total of 267 terrorists and families members, comprising 22 adult male, 128 adult females and 117 children surrendered to troops at different locations of the North East theater of operation. All recovered items, apprehended criminals, rescued civilians were handed over to the appropriate authority for further action while captured terrorists and surrendered Boko Haram Terrorists/Islamic State of West Africa Province and members of their families are being profiled for further action.
- Furthermore, the air component Operation HADIN KAI conducted series of air interdiction operation at terrorists hideout, enclaves and camps. Notably, on 14 and 21 January 2023, several air interdiction operations were conducted at Dogon Chuku in the fringes of Northern Tumbums, Arina Kasa in Southern Tumbums of the Lake Chad Basin and Chidike in Mandara Mountains as well as Gezuwa area all in Borno State. The battle damage assessment revealed that several terrorists were neutralized with their structures and logistics destroyed in the air strikes.
NORTH CENTRAL ZONE
- Troops of Operation SAFE HAVEN as well as other troops deployed in the North Central Zone conducted operational activities in villages of Pankshin, Bokkos, Mangu and Langtang North Local Government Areas of Plateau State as well as Idu Chinkara in Kogi State and Gurara Local Government Area of Niger state. Notably, on 13 January 2023, based on credible intelligence, troops embarked on stop and search mission and arrested 2 gunrunners at Sabon Layi village in Langtang North Local Government Area of Plateau State. Items recovered from the suspects include; 5 AK47 rifles with magazines, 1 RPG 7 tube, 4 RPG 7 bombs, 4 RPG 7 chargers, 1 barreta pistol and 2 cell phones. Equally, on 12 January 2023, troops of Guards Brigades with Civilians Joint Task Force conducted fighting patrols to bandits’ hideout at Idu Chinkara in Kogi State and made contact with the criminals. Troops engaged criminals and neutralized 2 bandits. Troops exploited criminals’ hideout and recovered one RPG tube as well as rescued 30 kidnapped civilians. On the same day, troops responded to information on meeting engagement between local vigilantes and bandits around the adjourning forest near Daga and Izam villages in Gurara Local Government Area boarding Federal Capital Territory and Niger State, the bandits fled before troops arrival. Troops with vigilantes exploited further and arrested 11 suspected bandits as well as recovered 1 AK47 rifle.
- Equally, on 22 January 2023, based on credible intelligence, troops raided criminals hideout at Njuu and Waku village in Logo and Guma Local Government Areas of Benue State and made contact with terrorist. Following a fierce fight, 3 terrorists were neutralized. Troops recovered 8 dane guns, 2 AK47 rifles, 1 pistol, 3 rounds of 9mm ammunition, 112 rounds of 7.62mm special, 20 rounds of 5.56mm ammunition, 1 galil rifle, 1 magazine, 3 ATM cards and then sum of N69,000.00. Troops also arrested 5 terrorists as well as rescued 8 civilians.
- Consequently, within the weeks in review, troops neutralized 7 terrorists arrested 2 suspected gunrunners and 19 terrorists as well as rescued 36 kidnapped victims. Troops also recovered 8 AK47 rifles, 2 RPG tube, 4 RPG 7 bombs, 4 RPG 7 chargers and 2 pistol, 8 dane guns, 3 rounds of 9mm ammunition, 112 rounds of 7.62mm special and 20 rounds of 5.56mm ammunition.
NORTH WEST ZONE
- Troops of Operation HADARIN DAJI in the North West zone of the Country have continued to sustained offensive operation on terrorists’ enclaves, camps and hideouts within the zone. On 12 January 2023, troops on fighting patrol to terrorist enclaves at Lamba village in Maru Local Government Area and Kango Gabas forest in Gusau Local Government Area of Zamfara State. Troops intercepted terrorists while enroute to their camps and neutralized 5 terrorists. Troops exploited area and recovered 5 AK47 rifles, 60 rounds of 7.62mm special, 4 magazines loaded with 33 rounds of 7.62mm special and 4 motorcycles. Equally, on 17 January 2023, troops deployed at Danali in Danmusa Local Government Area of Kastina State made contact with terrorists. Following the encounter, 2 terrorists were neutralized while 2 AK47 rifles, 2 magazines loaded with 11 rounds of 7.62mm special and 3 motorcycles were recovered.
- Also on 18 January 2023, troops conducted a clearance operation to Malekachi, Munhaye, Awala, Mairairai, Kaboro, Dunya villages in Danko-Wasagu, Maru and Danmusa Local Government Areas of Kebbi, Zamfara and Katsina States respectively. Troops encounter and engaged bandits with deliberate fire at known bandits enclaves. Troops neutralized 8 bandits and destroyed several bandits enclaves as well as 4 vehicles, 9 motorcycles. Troops also recovered, 4 AK47 rifles, 2 AK47 magazines, 1 Sub-Machin Gun, 2 boafeng radio, 32 rounds of 7.62mm special, 2 laptops and 10 mobile phones amongst other items. Also, on 22 and 25 January 2023, troops responded to terrorist attack on locals and motorists at Dangeru and Dangezu villages in Batsari Local Government Area of Katsina State and Road Udawa-manini in Birnin Gwari Local Government Area of Kaduna State. Following a fire fight ensued during the encounters, troops neutralized 4 bandits, recovered 3 AK47 rifles, 50 rounds of 7.62mm special, 2 AK47 magazines, 1 boafeng HH radio and 1 motorcycle. Troops also rescued 15 kidnapped victims.
- Relatedly, troops responded to a distress on 23 January 2023 of bandits attack at Kumaroye village in Silame Local Government Area of Sokoto State. Following a fierce fire fight, troops neutralized 4 bandits and rescued 2 kidnapped victims. Troops exploited the area and recovered 3 AK47 rifles, 7 rounds of 7.62mm special, 1 pump action gun, 1 boafeng radio, 1 mine and 11 motorcycles. Cumulatively, within the weeks in review, troops in the North West zone recovered 18 AK47 rifles, 1 sub-machine gun, 126 rounds of 7.62mm special, 6 magazines, 13 motorcycles, 2 boafeng radios, 10 mobiles, and 2 laptops. Troops equally neutralized 22 terrorists, arrested 4 and rescued 26 civilians. All recovered items, apprehended suspects and rescued civilians have been handed over to the appropriate authority for further action.
- Equally, the air component of Operation HADARIN DAJI conducted series of Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance missions as well as air interdiction operations at terrorists enclaves in Sokoto State. Notably, on 15 January 2023, a well planned and coordinated air interdiction operation was carried out at identified terrorists at Rara Forest in Rabah Local Government Area of Sokoto State. After the air strike, feedback by troops revealed that 20 bandits were neutralized while 17 motorcycles and several boafeng radios were burnt in the air strike.
SOUTH SOUTH ZONE
- Troops of the Joint Task Force, operation DELTA SAFE in the South South Zone of the country have continued the war against oil theft and illegal refineries and other criminal activities in the Niger Delta region through aggressive and increased tempo in raids and clearance operations as well as patrol amongst other activities. Accordingly, the land, maritime and air component of the Operation DELTA SAFE conducted operational activities at the creeks, waterways, high sea, towns, cities of Bayelsa, Delta and River State to checkmate the activities of criminal elements and deny them freedom of action. Consequently, troops of Operation DELTA SAFE in the conduct of Operation OCTOPUS GRIP and other operations discovered and destroyed several illegal refining sites, equipment’s and petroleum products as well as apprehended some suspected criminals.
- On 12 Jan 23, troops responded to a distress call from local vigilante on suspected cultists with weapons at Bodo in Gokana LGA of River State. However, on sighting troops the suspects fled. Troops exploited the area and recovered one AK 47 rifle, one G3 rifle, 21 rounds of 7.62 mm Special ammo and 17 rounds of 7.62 mm NATO ammo as well as 2 extra AK 47 magazines. Equally, on 20 January 2023, troops in conjunction with Nigeria Police personnel conducted cordon and search operation on a suspected armed robbers hideout at Esamma Community in Bomadi Local Government Area of Delta State and made contact with criminals. Following a fierce fire fight, troops arrested 8 suspected armed robbers, recovered 1 AK47 rifle, 4 locally made dane guns, 22 rounds of 7.62mm special, 16 rounds of 7.62mm NATO, 38 cartridges, Improvised Explosive Device mats, 3 cutlasses, 1 dagger knife, one hammer and 3 magazines among other items.
- Cumulatively, within the weeks in focus troops discovered as destroyed 39 illegal refining sites, 48 cooking ovens, 103 storage tanks, 27 dugout pits and 33 wooden boats. Troops also recovered 1 tug boat, 1 barge, 3 pumping machines, 3 speed boats and 13 vehicles. Additionally, troops recovered 274,000 litres of crude oil, 71,000 litres of Automotive Gas Oil, 15 Ak47 rifles, while 40 suspected economic saboteurs were arrested. All recovered items and apprehended suspects have been handed over to the appropriate authority for further action. It is worth mentoring that the sum of One Hundred and Twenty Five Million Three Hundred Ninety Nine Thousand Four Hundred and Sixty Naira (N125,399,460.00) only were denied oil thieves.
- Equally, the air component Operation DELTA SAFE conducted air interdiction to several illegal refining sites and creeks at Gogokiri Degema and Okrika Local Government Areas both in Rivers State between 12 – 24 January 2023. Crew observed the sites to be active make shift tents sighted as well as illegal refining activities been carried out. The targets were engaged with weapons and the locations were observed to have exploded in an inferno while the illegal refining equipment’s were also destroyed.
SOUTH EAST ZONE
- Troops and other security agents have sustained the offensive against the activities of the outlawed Indigenous People of Biafra/Eastern Security Network criminals in the South East zone of the Country. In furtherance to this, troops conducted operational activities in villages, forests, towns and cities of Abia, Anambra, Ebonyi, Enugu and Imo States geared towards restoring peace and normalcy to the region. Notably, on 15 January 2023, following credible intelligence troops raided suspected criminals hideouts at Ugwoba town in Oji River Local Government Area in Enugu State and Mbosi village in Ihiala Local Government Area of Anambra State and arrested 10 suspected Indigenous People of Biafra/Eastern Security Network members including a high profile sponsor of Indigenous People of Biafra/Eastern Security Network criminals. Troops recovered 2 pump action rifles, 25 rounds of 9mm ammunition, 4 cutlasses, 1 axe, 1 vehicle, 5 mobile phones, substances suspected to be cannabis and the sum of N16,000.00 only.
- Additionally, on 17 January 2023, troops had a meeting engagement with Indigenous People of Biafra/Eastern Security Network criminals close to their check point along Orusumoghu-Ukpor in Ihiala Local Government Area of Anambra State. The criminals fled with gun shoot injuries, troops exploited the area and recovered 4 Improved Explosive Devices, 1 vehicle, 4 locally made explosive pipes, 8 cartridges, 1 locally made grenade and 1 single barrel gun. Equally, on 23 January 2023, troops in conjunction with the Nigerian Police personnel conducted fighting patrol to Indigenous People of Biafra/Eastern Security Network criminals camps at Usham and Amamputu villages in Oguta Local Government Area in Imo State but no contact was made. Troops however, condoned and search the camp and recovered 7 pump action rifles, 2 AK47 rifles, 33 rounds of 7.62mm special, 1 double barrel gun, 4 locally made hand grenade, 17 live cartridges. Others are 9 motorcycles, 2 vehicles, 6 mobile phones and 37 wraps of substances suspected to be cannabis.
- Consequently, within the weeks in review, troops recovered 2 AK47 rifles, 9 pump action rifles, 1 double barrel gun, 33 rounds of 7.62mm special, 4 locally made hand grenade, 17 live cartridges, 4 IEDs, 4 locally made explosive pipes, 8 cartridges, 1 locally made grenade, 1 barrel gun, 25 rounds of 9mm ammo, 4 cutlasses, 1 axe, 1 vehicle, 5 mobile phones and the sum of N16,000.00 only. Troops equally neutralized 6 terrorists, arrested 24 and rescued 16 civilians. All recovered items, apprehended suspects and rescued civilians have been handed over to the appropriate authority for further action.
- On a final note, I wish to once again convey the military high command commendations on troops efforts in the various theatres of operations across the nation. The media community is also acknowledged for their partnership and continued cooperation with the military and other security agencies, in our quest to restore peace and security to our dear Country. Also, the entire populace is hereby appreciated, for the support given to the Armed Forces and other security agencies in the conduct of our various operations across the country, while also urging them to continue to provide prompt and creditable information on the activities of terrorists and other criminal elements, in their respective areas.
Thank you all for your attention and GOD bless.
Defence Media Operations
26 January 2023