Kaduna State government, yesterday, disclosed that over 50 bandits were neutralised by combined ground and air assault in Birnin Gwari local government area.
In a statement issued by the commissioner for internal security and home affairs, Samuel Aruwan, he said the security operation happened in the Saulawa-Farin Ruwa axis of Birnin Gwari local government area.
In Maiduguri, Borno State, troops also killed 24 suspected Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists in separate offensives in the state capital and its environs and recovered some weapons.
The theatre commander of “Operation Hadin Kai”, Major General Christopher Musa, said the troops killed 16 Boko Haram insurgents a few kilometres from Maiduguri city, the capital of Borno state.
Aruwan said armed bandits on about 50 motorcycles were sighted fleeing towards Farin Ruwa and were struck effectively by the gunship as fleeing remnants were mopped up by ground forces.
He said, “According to operational feedback to the Kaduna State government from the command of the joint operations, a Nigerian Air Force helicopter gunship provided close air support to ground troops advancing from the Dogon Dawa-Damari-Saulawa axis.
“Following extensive scans, bandits were spotted on five motorcycles, about 4km east of Saulawa, waiting to ambush the ground forces. They were engaged vigorously by the helicopter gunship, and were wiped out.
“A second helicopter gunship joined the operations, and many more fleeing bandits were neutralised by precise strikes. Assessment revealed that more than 50 bandits were neutralised during the joint operation”
Aruwan said Governor Nasir El-Rufai has congratulated the ground troops and gunship crews on the rout.
In the Borno incident, General Musa said during the exploitation of the general area by the troops, two gun trucks were seized and one was destroyed.
Also, army spokesman, Brigadier General Onyema Nwachukwu, said on Monday that troops from a joint Nigerian and Cameroonian operation killed four ISWAP terrorists who attacked a forward army base in Borno.
Nwachukwu said another four suspected terrorists died when their truck that was mounted with anti-aircraft guns drove over an improvised explosive device.