Commander, Operation Lafiya Dole Meets With Lake Chad Commission Expert
A team of experts from the Lake Chad Basin Commission, under the auspices of the African Union (AU) has paid a visit to the Headquarters, Theatre Command, Operation Lafiya Dole in Maimalari Cantonment, Maiduguri.
The team, which was led by Dr Eleanor Nwadinobi, a Gender Advisor, was constituted by the AU in conjunction with the Multinational Joint Task Force to proffer stabilisation and revitalisation strategies for the Lake Chad Basin.
Eleanor Nwadinobi stated further that the team was mandated to research and work out strategies in the areas of Humanitarian, Socio-economic, Educational, Governance, Gender as well as Prevention and Countering of Violent Extremism to revitalise and stabilise the Lake Chad Basin.
The team leader also revealed that in carrying out its mandate, it was expedient for the team to visit the Lake Chad Basin Commission member states as she lauded the Theatre Command and troops of Operation Lafiya Dole for the successes so far recorded in the Counter terrorism and Counter insurgency operations against the Boko Haram terrorists.
In his response, the Theatre Commander, Operation Lafiya Dole, Major General Rogers Nicholas, told the team of experts that the security situation in the north east theatre is generally calm as the Boko Haram insurgents have been degraded, adding that the terrorists have resorted to callously carry out isolated suicide bombing and IED attacks on vulnerable and soft targets.
While fielding questions from members of the team, the Theatre Commander lamented that a wrong narrative about the ongoing war on terror is undermining the operation and misrepresenting it in the public domain.
He stated that the Nigerian state is at war and must be recognised as such to enable the effective mobilisation of all instruments of national power to prosecute the war.
“It is high time we reversed the wrong narrative that the ongoing war is between the Nigerian military and Boko Haram insurgents, it is rather a war between the Nigerian nation and the Boko Haram terrorists “, he added.
Gen Nicholas emphasised that other stakeholders must play their roles in the multi faceted war against the terrorists for the attainment of total defeat. He urged the team to be judicious in the execution of its mandate to facilitate the restoration of socio – economic development in the region.
Troops Kill 15 Boko Haram Insurgents
Combined troops of Operation Lafiya Dole and the Cameroonian Defence Forces, have killed 15 Boko Haram insurgents in separate encounters in Southern Lake Chad Basin.
The troops neutralised the insurgents whilst conducting operations to clear remnants of Boko Haram insurgents in the Lake Chad Islands and surrounding villages of northern Born.
A statement signed by the Deputy Director, Public Relations, Theatre Command, Operation Lafiya Dole, Col Onyema Nwachukwu, said troops dislodged the insurgents from their hideout after a fierce battle, killing 11 insurgents in Gomaran village of Southern Lake Chad Basin.
The statement also said in two other separate encounters with the fleeing insurgents in Firgi and Moula, both in Bama and Dikwa Local Governments Areas of Borno State, troops also ambushed and neutralised four Boko Haram insurgents who were fleeing troops’ onslaught in the northern fringes.
“The clearance operations also led to the recovery of one single barrel gun, one dane gun and one locally made pistol. Other items recovered from the dislodged insurgents include four motorcycles, motorcycle spare parts, two tricycles, six pumping machines, and two power generating sets.
“Additionally, the valiant troops captured two Boko Haram flags, a pair of Camouflage uniform, a pair of combat boots, a Camera, a bag of mechanical tools and medications.
“Four men, 33 women and 16 children were rescued by the troops from the insurgents’ hideouts.The rescued hostages are currently being profiled for subsequent hand over to officials of the Internally Displaced Persons’ Camp for documentation and administering” the statement also said.
In another development, an aged Boko Haram terrorist on Wednesday, killed himself in a suicide bomb attack around a telephone mast in Konduga, Borno State. The elderly man, pretending to be weak and feeble, was being searched by men of the Civilian Joint Task Force, when he detonated a suicide vest contained in a bag he was carrying.
Unfortunately, three Civilian Joint Task Force members paid the supreme price in the incident. The wounded have been evacuated for medical attention.
Nwachukwu said this singular incident points to the variation in the tactics of the Boko Haram terrorists in their uncanny resolve to deceptively infiltrate communities and towns to mindlessly attack vulnerable and soft targets.
He said aside using women and children, the terrorists are now engaging the aged in suicide bombing as witnessed in this recent incident, adding that they have also been detected to now appear clean and well dressed to look unsuspicious and enable them gain access to targets marked for suicide attack.
“Some of the terrorists have also been found to now conceal their suicide vests by wearing it on the thigh rather than the waist to appear less bulky and evade detection when searched.
“In view of these developments, members of the public are please urged to be vigilant and discerning as they go about their normal daily routines and activities” he said
NAF Unveils New Base For Combat Search And Rescue Operations In Plateau
The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) has recently unveiled its new Base in Kerang, Plateau State with the commissioning of newly constructed office and residential accommodations for the 205 Combat Search and Rescue Group (CSARG).
The newly commissioned projects include the Group Headquarters Complex, a 10 x one-bedroom accommodation for Non-Commissioned Officers and a 6 x one-bedroom Single Officers’ Quarters.
A statement by the NAF Director of Public Relations and Information, Air Vice Marshal Olatokunbo Adesanya said other commissioned projects include the Commander’s Official Residence and a 4 x 2-bedroom residential accommodation for Senior Non-Commissioned Officers serving in the Unit.
The statement also said the commissioned projects were in fulfillment of the promise made by the Chief of the Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, during the Ground Breaking Ceremony of the new Unit on 7 March 2017, to ensure timely and adequate provision of infrastructural facilities for the smooth commencement of operation by the Unit.
He further said the 205 CSARG, which had been operating from Jos since its establishment one and half years ago, will now commence operation from the new Base in Kerang.
While commissioning the projects, the guest of honour and governor of Plateau State, Barrister Simon Lalong, commended the CAS for ensuring the provision of the new facilities barely a year after the Ground Breaking Ceremony.
The governor noted that the commissioning of the Base was a further testimony of the Federal Government’s resolve to ensure security of the citizenry and maintain peaceful co-existence, adding that the establishment of the Special Operations Command and the commissioning of projects at 205 CSARG Kerang, was a glowing evidence of the commitment of the NAF leadership to the welfare of its personnel and a reflection of its determination to defend the territorial integrity of Nigeria.
He added that the unwavering desire of the CAS to make the NAF the best Air Force in Africa, was no doubt yielding the desired dividends.
The governor noted that the strategic location of the Unit in Kerang would not only shorten its response time to emergencies but would also improve the turnaround time at providing combat search and rescue for troops and citizens in distress.
In his address, the CAS disclosed that the 205 CSARG in Kerang was established to provide aid and operational assistance to wounded and distressed troops serving in combat units.
Abubakar used the occasion to appreciate the laudable generosity of the governor and the Kerang Community for the provision of 100 hectares of land for the establishment of the new Base.
He further reiterated the NAF’s commitment to the welfare of its personnel and to the wellbeing of members of its host community, as part of its efforts to promote cordial civil-military relations.
The Air Chief assured that in due course, the NAF would establish a hospital as well as primary and secondary schools to cater for the healthcare and educational needs of personnel and members of the host community also promising that the NAF would continue to provide adequate security in the state while maintaining a harmonious relationship with the citizens.
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