• Exercise Cat Race: Troops arrest 12 herdsmen in Benue
The Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai, has revealed how the military took over Sambisa, Boko Haram hideout in Borno State.
Buratai disclosed this at the 2018 West Africa Social Activities (WASA) programme which ended on Saturday in Apapa, Lagos.
The COAS said the professionalism and determination of Operation Deep Punch 2 led to the fall of Sambisa.
He was represented at WASA by the General Officer Commanding, 81 Division of the Nigerian Army, Maj. Gen. Enobong Udoh,
The COAS said the operation and other exercises, which were part of the training activities for the army in 2017, helped curtail criminal activities in parts of the country.
According to him, WASA is one of the ways of keeping the traditions of the army.
He explained that it was usually organised to mark the end of a training year and the beginning of another.
“Various field training exercises such as ‘Shirin Harbi,’ ‘Harbin Kunama 2’ and ‘Crocodile Smile 2’ were successfully conducted in all parts of the country in 2017. The climax of these exercises and operations was the ‘Operation Deep Punch 2’ in the North East, which led to the fall of the Sambisa.
“These exercises have notably gone a long way in curbing and reducing criminality and other crimes across the country,’’ he said.
Similarly, the COAS said that ‘Ayem Akpatuma,’ which is currently ongoing, is yielding significant results.
Buratai advised men and officers of the Nigerian Army to remain focused, dedicated and resilient in order to consolidate on the achievements recorded so far.
“As we commence another training cycle, I urge you all to remain committed to ensuring peace and stability across the country.
“You must remain focused, dedicated and resilient in order to consolidate on the achievements so far recorded.’’
WASA is an annual event aimed at promoting team spirits and confidence within and outside the barracks.
It is also a forum for informal, social interaction and avenue for the barrack community to showcase the rich and diverse cultures of the country.
Meanwhile, the army said 12 herdsmen have been arrested in Benue State.
The suspects were arrested by troops of 707 Special Forces Brigade presently taking part in the Exercise Cat Race called Ayem Akpatuma in the state.
They were arrested for alleged involvement in the destruction of farmland in Benue on Saturday, March 17, 2018.
Director, Army/Public Relations, Brigadier General Texas Chukwu, in a statement, yesterday, said the suspects were arrested during a visit of the Presidential Assessment Team to Mbayer/Yandev and Kaambee wards in the state.
Chukwu said the troops, after arresting the suspects, also recovered some items which have been handed over to the police.
“On search of the general area, two motorcycles were recovered from the suspects. The 12 herdsmen were handed over to the police for further action,” he said.