Recent operations carried out by the Department of State Services in various parts of the country have significantly degraded capabilities of hoodlums, especially kidnappers and terrorists whose activities have continually threatened the peace.
For instance, on 20th March, 2017, a suspected Boko Haram kingpin, Adenoyi ABDULSALAM was arrested in Ado Ekiti, Ekiti State by a Joint Military/DSS operation team. An Ak-47 rifle was recovered from the suspect who is presently undergoing investigation. ABDULSALAM was on the final stages of kidnapping some high level targets in Ekiti, not only to raise funds but to terrorise communities in the State. Prior to this arrest, several other Boko Haram suspects had been apprehended in various parts of Northern Nigeria especially the States of Bauchi, Yobe, Gombe, Nasarawa, Kaduna and Kogi.
Typical cases of arrest include that of 29 year Boko Haram member, Usman Ladan RAWA (a.k.a Mr. X) on 17th March 2017 at Lafia, Nasarawa State. RAWA was discovered to have rented accommodation at Lafia for Abdullahi ISA, known for his notorious terrorist actions. His plan was to establish an effective base to conduct terrorism, kidnapping and robbery operations in Abuja, Minna, and other adjoining States. On 15th March 2017, Nasiru SANI (a.k.a OSAMA) was arrested at Ahmadu Bello Way, Bauchi. He is a Boko Haram top commander, and discovered to have escaped from Bauchi Central Prison in October 2010 and hid in Maiduguri, Borno State. Similarly, on the same 13th March 2017, at Jeka-da-Fari Market, Gombe State, Adamu JIBRIN was arrested. He operated under the pseudo name of Dantata SULE and served as a middleman for Boko Haram members and their commanders especially the one simply identified as KANUMBU. Suspect affirmed his membership of the sect.
On 1st and 2nd March, 2017, at Ngalda Town of Fika LGA, Yobe State and Nagazi area of Adavi LGA, Kogi State, Abdulazeez UMARU and Nuhu USMAN a.k.a OKADIGBO were respectively arrested. UMARU, who has confessed his membership of the Boko Haram sect was arrested by the Service in concert with the local vigilante. Preliminary investigations have revealed the participation of USMAN in several deadly insurgent attacks in Kogi State.
While the Service has ensured a relative peaceful environment in the month of March, it is instructive to note that it recorded many successes in the month of February as can be seen from its operations during the period.
On 2nd February 2017, one Suleiman YAHAYA who had been on the wanted list of security agencies was arrested during a raid in Potiskum LGA, Yobe State, for his role in several terrorist attacks in Borno and Yobe States. Similarly, on 7th February, 2017, in Kumbotso LGA, Kano State, Mohammed ISYAKA (a.k.a Maikwano), was also arrested for his complicity in Boko Haram attacks in the North East.
Meanwhile, on 9th February, 2017, at Ayingba, Dekina LGA of Kogi State, the trio of Uwais ABUBAKAR, Abdullahi UMARU and Mukhtar SULEMAN who are Boko Haram terrorists, were arrested by the Service’s tactical team. Suspects were actively involved in series of attacks on select targets in Kogi State such as the Federal Polytechnic Idah, Kogi State University and the newly constructed Kogi State Revenue House, Lokoja.
Ali BUKAR and Mustapha UMAR were also arrested on 17th February 2017 at Zaria Road, Kano State for their involvement in Boko Haram activities. Abdullahi ISAH, an indigene of Isari LGA of Yobe State was equally arrested at the Lafia Modern Market, Lafia, Nasarawa State for gun-running to raise funds for Boko Haram operations. He was a suspected armourer of the sect.
In furtherance of sustaining its operations against Boko Haram during the month of February, the Service on 28th February, arrested a Boko Haram Commander and food supplier, Ibrahim FULATA and his associates – Shamsudeen ALIYU, Zaharadeen IBRAHIM and Suleiman ABUBAKAR at Zaria Clinic, Dustsen Tanshi area of Bauchi LGA of Bauchi State.
Determined to sustain the prevailing peace and stamp out all cases of kidnap in various States where it is taking root, the Service staged vigorous operations which recorded successes. The duo of Ibrahim SULE and Bello SHEHU were arrested on 13th March, 2017 at Nasarawa town, Nasarawa LGA of Kaduna State for their suspected involvement in the kidnap of two (2) German nationals – Dr.Peter BREUNING and Johannes BREHINGER – on 22nd February, 2017 at Pahkogo, Kagarko LGA, Kaduna State. They are being questioned to establish other possible members of the network.
On 9th February, 2017 at Umuahia, Abia State, Tochukwu Prince JOHNSON and Madubuike Christopher IROMAKA were arrested for alleged threat to abduct two (2) prominent businessmen in the State namely: Obioma OKORIE and Chidozie OHABUCHIRO. Also on 12th February, 2017, a notorious local bandit, Saidu MUSA was arrested in Makarfi LGA of Kaduna State for terrorizing people of the area. On arrest, a pump action gun and twenty three (23) cartridges were discovered in his vehicle, Toyota Carina KRD 523 EZ (Lagos).
In another development, on 3rd February, 2017, Ashiru ABUBAKAR, a suspected kidnapper, was arrested at Maraban Jos Junction, Igabi LGA of Kaduna State. He was a member of the notorious gang that kidnapped eleven (11) travelers along Kaduna-Abuja road, where they extorted several millions of naira from them to buy their freedom. The Service also arrested some kidnappers in Kaduna, Kogi, and Plateau States. While Bingel MOHAMMED, Kabiru LAWAL, Dahiru LAWAL and Shagari USMAN were arrested in Maigiginya Village, Igabi LGA, Kaduna State on 4th February, 2017, Lawal ABDULLAHI, a notorious kidnap kingpin was also arrested on 6th February 2017 at Elka, Ohizenyi Okehi LGA of Kogi State.
On 24th February 2017, at Bosso LGA, Niger State, Abubakar MOHAMMED a.k.a Baba DOGO, a notorious kidnapper/cattle rustler was arrested. On the same date at Ankpa Town, Kogi State, thirty (30) year suspected kidnapper, Mallam Idris BABA was shot dead while trying to evade arrest.
Earlier on 28th January, 2017, in Wudil, Wudil LGA, Kano State, the Service arrested Ahmed MUHAMMED a high profile Boko Haram terrorist, who kept custody of many persons abducted by sect members during their operations. On 31st January, 2017, one Yusuf HAYATUDEEN, a suspected terrorist was arrested by the Service at Oziokutu Adavi LGA, Kogi State. Subject had threatened to bomb a Radio House in Okene, Kogi State before his apprehension.
The Service wishes to state that the successes recorded in these mop up operations were made possible by the cooperation and support of patriotic citizens and other stakeholders who volunteered useful information in this regard. While the Service pledges to sustain this tempo by undertaking similar operations in many more areas, there is no doubt therefore that the zeal towards ensuring safety of life and property will be dutifully maintained.