By Sumaila Ogbaje
Abuja, Sept. 14, 2020 Troops of Operation Sahel Sanity have rescued 31 kidnapped victims, arrested 29 bandits and their collaborators and eliminated one in continued offensives against bandits in the North West region.
In a statement issued on Monday in Abuja, the Acting Director, Defence Media Operations, Brig.-Gen. Benard Onyeuko, said the troops had recorded more successes against the bandits and other criminal elements in recent time.
Onyeuko also said that the troops on Aug. 30, intercepted bandits along Anka-Gummi road in Zamfara and recovered 40 rustled cow and handed them to their owners.
He said that the troops foiled another cattle rustling attempt and recovered several cattle from suspected cattle rustlers that invaded Zango village in Jibia Local Government Area of Katsina State.
The Acting Director, Defence Media Operations, said that the troops deployed to Faskari had on Sept. 1, came in contact with some bandits and rescued two women kidnapped by the bandits and reunited them their families.
“On Sept. 2, troops on patrol around Mararaban Kawaye tracked and engaged bandits in a gun fight, rescued three victims and recovered one motorcycle abandoned by the fleeing bandits,’’ he said.
Onyeuko further disclosed that a suspected notorious gang leader voluntarily surrendered to troops at Dansadau and submitted three AK 47 rifles, one sub machine gun and two magazines.
He said that troops also on Sept. 6, arrested an alleged notorious bandit known as “Commander” by his gang, on the Bingi road.
According to him, troops acting on reliable intelligence also arrested a suspect believed to be an informant working for a wanted notorious bandit, and during interrogations the suspect confessed that the bandit bought him a motorbike ,which he uses to run errands for him.
The Spokesperson also revealed that troops on patrol responded to a distress call at an estate along Dandume road and rescued nine kidnapped victims.
“Also, on Sept. 7, troops at FOB Kekuwuje arrested two suspected bandits following credible intelligence that the suspects were members of a bandit group terrorizing the area.
“Items recovered from them include the sum of N1.56 million suspected to be proceeds of their criminal activities, one motorcycle, two mobile phones and cloths concealed in a bag.
“The suspects confessed during interrogation to be involved in selling rustled cattle received from bandits,” he said.
Onyeuko also said that troops deployed to Daki Takwas intercepted and arrested 17 armed Yansakai members on seven motorcycles at Danmarke village in Bukkuyum area of Zamfara.
According to him, preliminary investigation revealed that suspects are from Maga in Kebbi State while 12 locally fabricated guns, seven motorcycles and assorted charms were recovered from them.
He said that troops also rescued 14 persons kidnapped by suspected bandits along Dutsinma-Yantumaki road on Sept 9.
Onyeuko said that the victims who were travelling along the route in a commercial vehicle ran into the bandits who diverted their vehicle in an attempt to take them hostage.
The operations spokesman said that all the suspects arrested would be handed over to the police after completion of its investigations.