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24,059 Terrorists Surrender, As Troops Kill 1,920 In Nine Months

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The Defence Headquarters (DHQ), yesterday said soldiers on counter insurgency operations and other internal security operations across the country killed 1,910, terrorists, bandits and other criminals between May 20, 2021 and January 6 2022.
The DHQ also said soldiers arrested over 700 terrorists, bandits and other criminals and rescued 729, kidnapped victims from their abductors.
Acting Director Defence Media Organisation (DMO), Major General Bernard Onyeuko, who made this known at a media briefing, also said that 24,059 terrorists and their families comprising 5,326 males, 7,550 females and 11,183 children surrendered to troops in the North East within the period under review.
Giving an update of military operations conducted in the last nine months, Onyeuko said that the onslaught against terrorist, bandits, Kidnappers and other criminal groups have led to the destruction of several hideouts of the criminals, recovery of several arms, ammunitions, weapons including gun trucks and destruction of several illegal refineries in the South-South part of the country.
He commended the media for their cooperation with the military in fighting the terrorists and other criminals and assured the commitment of the Armed Forces in tackling the security challenges bedevilling country.
He said “As we continue with our business of keeping the general public abreast with our operational activities, we deem it necessary to jog memories on our achievements through the unrelenting and committed efforts of the Nigerian military and other security agencies in tackling the security challenges across the country in the past year. This would give a better perspective of the cumulative achievements resulting from our operational engagements in the various theatres. Against this backdrop, the briefing today will cover a cumulative summary of our achievements between 20 May, 2021 and 6 January, 2022; from when we started our fortnight briefings.
“Within the timeframe in focus, own troops conducted series of land, maritime and air operations in the various theatres, involving both kinetic and non-kinetic activities across the country in major and subsidiary operations. Our gallant troops in the frontlines executed these operations with utmost zest that resulted in the incapacitation of terrorists’ fighting capability and neutralisation of scores of terrorists, bandits and other criminal elements, including high profile ones, who were either neutralised in action or arrested.
“Furthermore, large numbers of terrorists have continued to surrender due to troops’ overwhelming superior combat power and intelligence activities. Also, troops rescued kidnapped civilians as well as repelled and forestalled criminal elements’ attacks on civilians and troops. Troops also recovered caches of arms and ammunition, equipment, vehicles and large numbers of livestock within the period. In the maritime environment, our ever resilient and dogged troops’ operations disrupted activities of economic saboteurs and smugglers, immobilised illegal refining sites and arrested perpetrators as well as recovered tons of petroleum products, arms, ammunition, vehicles, boats and other equipment used for illegal bunkering activities. Besides, troops engaged in various non-kinetic activities as strategies for addressing security challenges in different theatres.
“Within the period under review, own troops operational activities in Operation HADIN KAI theatre resulted in the neutralization of 950 terrorists, including their high profile Commanders and Amirs. Also, a total of 79terrorists were arrested and 113 kidnapped civilians were rescued by the troops of Operation HADIN KAI within the period. In the same vein, a total of 195 assorted arms, including AK-47 rifles, GPMGs, PKT guns and locally fabricated guns were recovered from terrorist elements in the course of the operations.
“In addition, a total of 2,385 rounds of different calibres of ammunition and 253 rustled livestock were recovered, while a total of 14 gun trucks of the terrorists were destroyed in the course of the operations, while 16 gun trucks were captured by own troops within the period. Furthermore, a total of 24,059 terrorists and their families comprising 5,326 adult males, 7,550 adult females and 11,183 children have so far surrendered to own troops in the North-East. All surrendered elements have been properly profiled and handed over to appropriate authorities for necessary actions.
“In Operation HADARIN DAJI, the operational efforts of our gallant troops yielded appreciable results between 20 May 2021 and 6 January 2022. A total of 537 armed bandits and other criminal elements were neutralized in action by own troops, while 374 criminal elements, including armed bandits and their collaborators as well as armed herdsman and robbers were arrested. Furthermore, 227 assorted arms, including AK-47 rifles, PKT machine guns and GPMGs as well as 4,443 rounds of different calibres of ammunition and 3,250 rustled livestock among other items and vehicles were recovered within the period.
“Similarly, a total of 238motorcycles and 118 extra rifle magazines were recovered, while 452 kidnapped civilians were rescued by own troops in the course of the operations. This is in addition to several other feats recorded during air offensives executed on bandits’ enclaves by the Air Component. Recent among prominent air offensives were concurrent air strikes executed on bandits’ enclaves at Gusami Forest and West Tsamre village in Birnin Magaji LGA of Zamfara State, which led to the neutralization of scores of armed bandits. The feats were recorded in the early hours of 3 January, 2022 on the heels of credible intelligence, which revealed the locations of two key bandits’ leaders, the notorious Alhaji Auta and Kachalla Ruga. Consequently, a force package of NAF platforms were dispatched to takeout the enclaves, which resulted in the neutralization of the leaders as well as their cohorts. In addition, several other armed bandits fleeing from the hit of the air strikes, were killed during follow up strikes. No fewer than 100 armed bandits were neutralized in the encounter.
“Troops of Operation SAFE HAVEN within the period recorded attendant successes in their kinetic operations within the North-Central Zone. Some of the operations led to the arrest of a total of 1,771 criminal elements including armed bandits, armed herdsmen and livestock rustlers; while 109 armed bandits and other criminal elements were neutralized in action. Also, in the course of the operations, a total of 75 kidnapped civilians were rescued, while 1,306 livestock, 108 assorted arms including AK-47 rifles and locally produced guns as well as 493 rounds of different calibres of ammunition among other items were recovered in the course of the operations.
“Moreover, troops carried out various non-kinetic activities in different locations of the theatre to contain security challenges in its area of responsibility. Some of these include; organised peace and security meetings with critical security stakeholders to discuss and proffer actionable solutions to security concerns as well as organized sporting activities for youths, in other to dissuade them from criminal activities, with consolation prizes.
“Between 20 May, 2021 and 6 January, 2022, troops of Operation WHIRL STROKE operational activities cumulatively resulted in the neutralization of a total of 168 criminal elements, while 127 of them, including migrant armed bandits were arrested. Also, 118 different types of arms and 381 different calibres of ammunitions as well as 391 livestock were recovered, while 33 kidnapped civilians were rescued within the period under review.
“In addition, Operation WHIRL STROKE within the period, held peace and security meetings with community and youth leaders as well as other security agencies and other critical stakeholders as non-kinetic means of tackling insecurity challenges in the its area of responsibility. These meetings were geared towards finding lasting solutions to the security challenges in the North-Central Zone.
“Within the Operation THUNDER STRKE/WHIRL PUNCH theatre, own troops in the period under review, engaged in various kinetic operations which cumulatively resulted in the neutralisation of 44 and arrest of 46 criminal elements. Troops operations also led to the recovery of 59 assorted arms, 12 extra AK-47 rifles magazines, 113 rounds of 7.62mm ammunition and 16 motorcycles among other items in the course of the operations. Additionally, a total of 14 kidnapped civilians were rescued and reunited with their families within the period under review.
“In Operation DELTA SAFE, troops of the Armed Forces of Nigeria working in conjunction with other security agencies recorded remarkable results in their efforts against economic sabotage and other sundry crimes in the South-South Zone. Within the period under review, troops discovered and immobilised a cumulative total of 145 illegal refining sites, 209 ovens, 122 cooking pots/boilers, 161 cooling systems, 224 reservoirs, 160 large dugout pits and 367 storage tanks in the Niger Delta region.
“Consequently, a total of 12,846,300 litres of illegally refined Automotive Gas Oil as well as 29,237barrels and 6,491,000 litres of stolen crude oil were recovered within the period. Similarly, a total of 3,969,000 litres of Dual Purpose Kerosene; 10,200,500 litres of illegally refined Premium Motor Spirit were recovered by troops of Operation DELTA SAFE.
“Additionally, troops recovered 33 assorted arms; 5,268 rounds of different calibres of ammunition and 21 AK-47 rifle magazines, while 3,110 bags of 50kg foreign parboiled smuggled rice, 662 pieces of galvanised pipes, 32 tanker trucks and 119 wooden boats used for illegal oil bunkering activities were impounded and handled appropriately in the course of the operations. Also, a total of 41 kidnapped victims were rescued, while 77 criminal elements associated with pipeline vandalism, piracy, illegal oil bunkering and armed robbery were arrested within the period. All the arrested criminals and recovered items have been handed over to relevant security agencies for further action.
“The troops of Operation AWATSE in the fight against pipeline vandals and economic saboteurs in the South-West Zone successfully forestalled criminal activities within the period under review. In the course of the operations, troops impounded a total of 1,458,600 litres of illegally refined Premium Motor Spirit; 9,345 barrels of stolen crude oil and 355,000 litres illegally refined Automotive Gas Oil.
“Additionally, troops recovered a total of 1,594 rounds of ammunition and 14 assorted rifles. Also, within the period, a total of 15 illegal refining sites were immobilised, while 12 boats and 13 trucks engaged in illegal activities were arrested. In the same vein, within the period 15 kidnapped civilians were rescued, while 28 criminal elements were arrested.
“In summary, the Armed Forces of Nigeria from 20 May, 2021 to 6 January, 2022 neutralised 1,910 criminal elements, including terrorists, armed bandits and robbers as well as kidnappers across the country. This is in addition to scores of other terrorists and armed bandits killed during air strikes within the period. Troops also rescued a total of 729 kidnapped victims across the country.
“Furthermore, within the period in focus, troops made cumulative total recoveries of 13,201,300 litres of illegally refined Automotive Gas Oil and 3,969,000 litres of Dual Purpose Kerosene. Also, 38,582 barrels and 6,491,000 litres of stolen crude oil as well as 11,659,500 litres of illegally refined Premium Motor Spirit were recovered and handed appropriately. Additionally, a total of 912 criminal elements were arrested, while large cache of arms and ammunition as well as livestock among other items of economic and security concerns were recovered by the troops during the period.
“Gleaning from the available information as I have just presented, there is no gain saying that our operational performance for the year 2021 shows our commitment to ensure peace is restored in the country. It shows the synergy between the Nigerian military and other security agencies is succeeding in tackling the security challenges facing the country. We will continue to sustain the offensive and will not relent until peace is restored to every troubled zone in Nigeria. The general public is also assured of our commitment to protect lives and properties as well as our economic assets anywhere, with renewed vigour this year.
“The High Command of the Nigerian Military continues to thank the general public and members of the press for their support and further solicit everyone’s cooperation towards providing credible and timely information that will facilitate proactive engagements in our operations. The Military High Command also commends all the gallant troops of the Armed Forces and personnel of other security agencies involved in various operations across the Country for their resilience, doggedness and commitment. Troops are further encouraged to remain resolute and decisive in securing the country”.

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Hold Leaders Without Character Responsible For Nigeria’s Woes -Wike

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Leading Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential aspirant and Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, has said that Nigerians should be wary of those who campaigned vehemently and foisted President Muhammadu Buhari on Nigeria as its messiah, for the woes that have overwhelmed the country.
Wike specifically berated some aspirants in the PDP who caused disunity in the party in 2015, formed the new-PDP and sold out the party’s goodwill and electoral opportunities.
He made the accusation when he met with Oyo State PDP leaders and delegates in Ibadan, capital of Oyo State, yesterday, to solicit support ahead of the party’s presidential primary this month.
“The issue is, who are those who made PDP to lose election in 2015 that today we are suffering? Today, we are in opposition and trying to take power back.
“But see what the country has been turned into. Who are those who told Nigerians that President Buhari is a saint, that President Buhari will salvage Nigeria? What is their sense of judgement? Who are those aspirants who abandoned PDP, betrayed PDP and went to support President Buhari?”
Wike insisted that some PDP presidential aspirants brought Buhari to power, and now, the country is suffering for their wrong sense of judgement.
“Now, we are suffering. People are dying every day. From January to March in Kaduna, over 1,000 people have been killed. So many people have been kidnapped.”
The Rivers State governor also alluded to a similar behaviour that was demonstrated by a PDP chieftain who got immense support of the party in 2019.
Wike stated that there was need for electorate at all levels to be more concerned about the kind of people they want to entrust the leadership of the country.
The Rivers State governor said anyone who desires to govern Nigeria must be must be firm, courageous and should own up what he says.
“If it was the wrong thing that was said, say I am sorry but I have to say something as a leader. Not when you say something one minute, the next moment you say they didn’t get your approval.”
Wike said PDP and Nigeria as a while do not require theorists, but somebody who has the ability and qualities to offer focused leadership.
He explained that if he becomes the president of Nigeria, he would put the best of heads together who will work under good supervision and coordination.
According to him, anybody who fails to deliver would be relieved of the appointment.
“Nigerians know my views. I believe in restructuring. I believe in state police. You cannot stop insecurity in this country without state police which is the practice in all countries that run true federalism. Intelligence is key. Before it happens, you’ve stopped it or cage them.”
Wike insisted that Nigeria has to be rescued from the APC-led Federal Government so that sanity can be restored and conscience reinforced in public servants.
“Look at it, 42 people died in train blast, up until now, no concrete report. This is a country where a Minister of Transport, after people died in such accident and the next day, he went and collected form for Presidency.
“You’re a Minister of Education, schools have closed for how many months, the next thing, the minister went and collected form for Presidency. I have not seen a country like this, no conscience.”
In his remarks, Oyo State Governor, Engr Oluseyi Makinde, assured Wike of the support of Oyo and South-West geopolitical zone support.
“If they say Seyi Makinde and the delegates from the South-West of Nigeria are supporting Governor Wike, say there is a reason. When people come to canvass for your vote listen to them, but at the end of the day tell them this is who (Wike) we are supporting.”
Similarly, the former Governor of Ekiti State, Ayo Fayose, explained that South-West delegates would be meeting in Ibadan before the PDP national convention to take decision on who to support.
According to Fayose, for the first, delegates from the South-West will be speaking with one voice during the convention to pick the party’s presidential flagbearer.
“We will take a position and we will hand over the delegates to our governor, our leader (Makinde). If you like me, follow me. If you like Governor Wike, follow him. But by the grace of God we will do house meeting before we set out. We will go to Abuja with, at least, 85 to 90percent of our votes in one direction.”

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Electoral Act: S’Court Joins Rivers In Buhari, Malami’s Suit

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The Supreme Court, yesterday, okayed an application that Rivers State Government filed to be joined as a party in the suit President Muhammadu Buhari and the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami filed to void Section 84(12) of the Electoral Act, 2022.
A seven-man panel of the Justices of the apex court led by Justice Musa Dattijo, allowed the joinder application that Rivers State brought through the Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Hon Ikuinyi-Owaji Ibani and the state Attorney-General, Prof Zacheaus Adangor, even as it shifted hearing on the suit till May 26.
The applicants told the court that they were opposed to the suit marked SC/CV/504/2022, which originally had the National Assembly as the sole Respondent.
President Buhari and Malami had approached the Supreme Court to contend that Section 84(12) of the Electoral (Amendment) Act, 2022, is inconsistent with the provisions of Sections 42, 65, 66, 106, 107, 131, 137, 147, 151, 177, 182, 192 and 196 of the Constitution as well as Article 2 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights.
They are, among other things, seeking, “a declaration that the joint and or combined reading of Section 65, 66, 106, 107, 131, 137, 147, 151, 177, 182, 192 and 196 of the Constitution, the provision of Section 84 (12) of the Electoral Act, 2022 which also ignores Section 84(3) of the same Act, is an additional qualifying and/or disqualifying factors for the National Assembly, House of Assembly, Gubernatorial and Presidential elections as enshrined in the said Constitution, hence unconstitutional, unlawful, null and void.
“A declaration that having regard to the clear provision of Section 1(3) of the Constitution read together with section 4 of the same Constitution, the legislative powers vested in the defendant do not permit or empower it to make any other law prescribing additional qualifying/disqualifying grounds for election to the National Assembly, House of Assembly, gubernatorial and presidential election outside the express constitutional qualification and disqualification provisions as already provided in each or all of Sections 65, 66, 106, 107, 131, 137, 147, 151, 177, 182, 192 and 196 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended), and without amendment to any of those sections is for the reason of inconsistency, unconstitutional, and therefore, null and void.
As well as, “An order nullifying the provision of Section 84 (12) of the Electoral Act, 2022 by application of the blue-pencil rule, for being unconstitutional, illegal, null and void and having been made in excess of the legislative powers of the defendant as enshrined in Section 4 of the Constitution (as amended).”
In the same vein, the National Assembly has asked the Supreme Court to strike out the suit.
The National Assembly, in its counter-affidavit, filed by its lawyer, Kayode Ajulo, said the Supreme Court cannot be invoked to amend the provision of any law validity made by lawmakers in the exercise of their legislative powers as granted by the Constitution.
They argued that the 1999 Constitution, as amended gave the National Assembly the power to make laws for good governance.
May 11, the Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja, vacated the judgement of the Federal High Court in Umuahia, Abia, which voided the provisions of Section 84(12) of the Electoral Act, 2022.
The appellate court, in a unanimous decision led by Justice Hamma Akawu Barka, held that the High Court, acted without jurisdiction.
It held that the Plaintiff, Mr Nduka Edede, lacked the locus standi to institute the action.
According to the appellate court, Edede, failed to establish any cause of action that warranted him to approach the court on the issue, noting that the plaintiff was unable to prove how he was directly affected by that section of the newly amended Electoral Act.
Consequently, it struck out the suit marked: FHC/UM/CS/26/2022, which Edede filed before the Umuahia court.
Nonetheless, the appellate court, while determining the appeal on the merit, held that the said provision of the Electoral Act was unconstitutional because it was in breach of Section 42 (1)(a) of the 1999 Constitution, as amended, stressing that the section denied a class of Nigerian citizens their right to participate in election.

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Experts Express Worries Over Paediatrics HIV Prevalence

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An expert in HIV/AIDS, Dr. Adesigbin Clement Olufemi, has said that in order for Nigeria to end HIV by 2030, necessary attention should be paid to checking paediatrics HIV prevalence.
Speaking at a two-day meeting on “FGN/Breakthrough Partnership, Advocacy Mapping Consultation” in Abuja, recently, Olufemi said there was the need to “expand active paediatric and adolescent HIV case-finding, using novel strategies”.
Olufemi, whose presentation was titled, “Paediatrics and Adolescent HIV Status in Nigeria: Advocacy Mapping”, also called for an improved community-focused service delivery strategies, which, he said, would focus greatly on specific identified children.
Olufemi, who is of the National AIDS, Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI), and Viral Hepatitis Control Programme (NASCP) of the Federal Ministry of Health, Abuja, and Deputy Director, Head, Treatment Care and Support at the ministry, stated the need to address demand-side barriers to uptake HIV services by children, adolescents and their families.


According to him, Nigeria will further need to implement service delivery frameworks, as well as to ensure weight-based Anti-Retroviral (ARV) prescription and transition of treatment optimisation.
These, he said, are in line with the reversed National Acceleration Plan for Paediatrics and Adolescent HIV Treatment and Care (2020-2022).
“Of course, children die of HIV because they are fragile. If we don’t find these children on time, within two years we can lose up to 50percent of them, and in five years, we can lose 80percent of them.
“Currently, Nigeria records about 12,000 children that die yearly of HIV”, he stated.

Speaking in a post-meeting exclusive interview, the Senior HIV Specialist, UNICEF, New York, Dr. Dorothy Nbori-Ngacha, explained that the essence of the two-day meeting was to work towards ending HIV/AIDS in 2030 by focusing on HIV infection in children and women.
While acknowledging that Nigeria has achieved a lot in checking HIV among adults, she stated that the country has not fared well in paediatrics infection.


“Nigeria has done something exceptionally well in adults getting tested and being placed on treatment at a high level. Over 90percent of adults needing treatment in Nigeria are already receiving treatment.
“Unfortunately, for the children, we are not doing well. Only 40percent to half the proportion we’re seeing in adults get treatment. Why are our children left behind?” she said.

By: Sogbeba Dokubo

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