By Samuel Oyadongha
YENAGOA—THE Nigerian Army yesterday said its operatives in the Niger Delta region had in the last four months neutralised four high profile militants that resisted arrest and engaged troops in violent confrontation during security operations.
It said several militant camps were also destroyed with large cache of arms recovered by the special security forces in the region.
According to the Nigerian Army, the neutralised militants include, Ossy Ibori (Ondo), Augustine Gbangbanran (Delta), Oyawerikumor aka Kariowei and leader of the Bakassi Strike Force also known as GI.
Acting Director of Defence Information, Defence Headquarters, Abuja, Brig-General John Agim and the Deputy Force Commander, Operation Delta Safe, OPDS, Brig- General Kelvin Aligbe, at media briefing in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, on the operational activities of the OPDS said the troops also recovered 1,389 heavy arms and 20,352 ammunition from militants and other hostile elements.
He said: “Some of the achievements made include enhanced safety of lives, rise in crude oil production, recovery of arms and ammunition, seizure and impoundment, destruction of illegal refineries and its ancillaries and arrest of suspects.”
On efforts to degrade capacity of criminals involved in crude oil theft and its associated crimes, he said, “Troops in the region had seized and impounded 24 vessels, 191 barges, 234 outboard engines and 476 other types of passenger boats.
“Additionally, the force seized 105 tanker trucks, 228 other vehicles and 610 pumping machines.”
as well as 76 generator sets and 5,842 other items used in facilitating illegalities.
“Suffice to state that part of the force efforts to deny criminals any freedom of action involves the destruction of their safe havens and the items used in perpetrating illegalities. The force has in this process destroyed 1,437 illegal refineries, 795 wooden cargo boats, 3,872 metal surface thanks and 1,019 plastic tanks, 13,129 drums and 13,343 Jerry cans.
“It is instructive to add that the introduction of the use of swamp buggy in the JTF’s anti-illegal refining operations has significantly degraded the capacity of illegal refinery operators to revamp destroyed illegal refineries.
“However, individuals are discouraged from indulging in illegal refining and bickering of crude oil products as this has huge implication in under in mind and destroying the ecosystem.”
He added that perpetrators of criminal acts within the Joint Operation Area are being tracked and apprehended for interrogation and possible prosecution.
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