Combined troops of 302 Artillery and 14 Field Engineer Regiments of the Nigerian Army, on Monday, have captured two locally made Artillery Projectile Launchers from the outlawed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and its armed affiliate, Eastern Security Network (ESN) fighters.
A statement by the Director, Army Public Relations, Brig.-Gen Onyema Nwachukwu, said the weapons, armed with projectiles were seized alongside other items, as troops swooped on the dissident fighters, who fled in disarray, deserting their camp on sighting troops.
He said the troops arrested one combatant of the group and recovered 48 rounds of 7.62 mm NATO ammunition, four mobile phones, one handheld communication radio and substance suspected to be cannabis, among others.
In separate operations on the same day, troops of 34 Artillery Brigade raided oil thieves camp in Oguta local government area of Imo State.
He said the troops recovered one crude oil cooking oven, three reservoirs, several connecting hoses and pipes, three mobile phones, one Power Generating set, three pumping machines, one CCTV Camera mounted on a tree top, substance suspected to be cannabis and some fetish objects.
Same troops, in a similar operation conducted the same day, uncovered and destroyed an illegal refining site, operating with several drums and crude oil ovens, laden with stolen crude oil, a dug-out pit containing about 50,000 litres of crude oil and 57 sacks of illegally refined automation gas oil.
He said: “The sacks of illegally refined products were surreptitiously concealed in a community health centre at Egbema Shell and Egbema West respectively in Ohaji/Egbema Local Government Area of Imo State.”
Meanwhile, the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Taoreed Lagbaja, reiterated commitment to maintaining peace and security in the country and has charged the troops to be resolute and uncompromising in the fight against terrorists, economic saboteurs and other criminal groups in the country.
He urged members of the public to provide credible information to security agencies to enhance ongoing operational efforts to improve security across the country.