Boko Haram/Islamic States West Africa Province (ISWAP) terrorists have continued to surrender to the Troops of Operation Lafiya Dole (OPLD) in the North East.
The Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, John Enenche, a major general, in a statement on Monday in Abuja, said the action was a sequel to the sustained offensive against the terrorists by the troops.
Mr Enenche said that as the military was inching towards the final defeat of insurgency in the region, more Boko Haram/ISWAP elements have either been arrested or neutralised.
He added that a number of terrorists’ equipment had been captured or destroyed while others continue to surrender amid sustained artillery bombardments and offensive onslaught against their enclaves/hideouts by air and land forces of OPLD.
Mr Enenche disclosed that a terrorist, Muhammadu Abubakar, AKA Babagana, surrendered to troops of 242 Battalion deployed on May 29, at Charlie Six Check Point, Mongonu in Borno.
He added that preliminary interrogation revealed that the 19-year-old repentant Boko Haram fighter joined the group about a year ago at Shaharam and participated in the attack on Tumbun Shaje.
According to him, Babagana called on his erstwhile colleagues in the forests to surrender to the troops of the Nigerian Army.
“It would be recalled that on May 24 another Boko Haram fighter, Malam Adamu Yahaya AKA Saad Karami surrendered to troops of 242 Battalion in Mongonu.
“On the same day, another Boko Haram/ISWAP fighter, a 35-year-old Muhammadu Kabudumi AKA Amir Sabat also surrendered to the troops 242 Battalion in Monguno.
“Kabudumi confessed to joining the Boko Haram sect in 2015 but denied participating in any of the sect’s operations.
“He, however, revealed that he has done duties at Boko Haram criminals’ camps at Abadam, Malam Fatori and Duguri under the leadership of Muhammadu Lawan, a notorious Boko Haram Commander,” he said.
The coordinator further disclosed that troops of Army Super Camp 11 Gamboru in Ngala Local Government Area arrested three terrorists at Isari village on May 8.
He added that the troops recovered one AK47 Rifle loaded with a magazine containing two rounds of 7.62mm Special ammunition, two swords, one cutlass, one axe, a set of arrows and charms.
Mr Enenche also disclosed that the troops of Operation Hadarin Daji deployed at Forward Operation Base Marafa raided an abandoned makeshift hut in Karama village and recovered one AK 47 Rifle and 25 rounds of 7.62mm Special ammunition on May 28.
“Troops of 17 Brigade in conjunction with elements of the Nigeria Police on May 27, stormed a bandits’ hideout in Dumburun Forest and rescued 3 abducted victims.’’
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According to him, the troops neutralised one bandit and recovered one FN Rifle mounted with magazine while others fled during the encounter.
“The rescued victims have been reunited with their families.
“On the same day, following intense pressure mounted on bandits by the resilient troops of Operation Katsina, some repentant bandits pleaded to surrender their weapons as well as jettison their criminal acts.
“Accordingly, 5 AK 47 Rifles, one Sniper Rifle, one FN Rifle, one PKT Machine Gun, one spare PKT Machine Gun barrel, one Pistol and one block engine of PKT Machine Gun were surrendered by the bandits.
“Other surrendered items include 5 AK 47 Rifle magazines, 2 FN Rifle magazines, 66 rounds of 7.62mm Special ammunition, 13 rounds of 7.62mm NATO belted also surrendered to troops of Operation KATSINA.
“The Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai, congratulated the gallant troops for their resilience, courage and dedication to the noble cause of defending our fatherland against the terrorists.
“The High Command of the Armed Forces also encourages the troops to continue to be steadfast and focused as they sustain their onslaught against the enemies of our nation,” he said.