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Army launches Exercise Crocodile Smile II in Lagos, Ogun

By Philip Nwosu

The Nigerian Army has launched its 2017 training operations codenamed Exercise Crocodile Smile II, in Lagos and Ogun states, areas covered by troops of 81 Division.

The force disclosed the exercise commenced in the Ogun and Lagos, on October 7, 2017 and will end on October 28, 2017.

The exercise could, however, progress to an operation when they start going after criminal elements in those states.

Spokesman of the division, Lieutenant Colonel Olaolu Daudu said in a statement, yesterday, that the exercise will also avail troops the opportunity to sharpen combat skills in the conduct of land base as well as joint riverine operation.

He added that the exercise will also feature humanitarian activities such as free medical outreaches in some selected communities and the conduct of sanitation exercises by the troops, for the benefit of host communities.

The division spokesman reiterated that the exercise may transform into real operations; to deal with emerging security challenges such as kidnappings, cultism, armed robbery, pipeline vandalism, and insurgency, among others. These, he said, are within the division’s area of responsibility.

He also said that during the exercise, troops are also expected to exhibit  proficiency in equipment maintenance, reconnaissance, inter-service and inter-agency cooperation, as well as effective application of the Nigerian Army Code of Conduct and strict adherence to the Rules of Engagement (ROE), during internal security operations or disaster management when called upon, in aid of civil authorities.

The  army also warned that Exercise Crocodile Smile II is not targeted at any individual or group.

“Law-abiding citizens are advised to go about their normal businesses without fear. Dates and locations of the various humanitarian activities, such as sanitation exercises and free medical interventions will be announced in due course.

“The division also wishes to allay the fears of the public, as they will witness increased movements of troops and equipment during the period.

“They are please requested to cooperate and support us, to ensure the success of the exercise, which is aimed at making the Nigerian army responsive to its constitutional roles.”

On September 13, 2017, the army launched Operation Python Dance II, in the South East.

Two days after army commenced full operations in the region. It will last till October 15, 2017. The operation is still raising dust in the region as members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) have clashed with the army, almost immediately it was launched.

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