GOC orders troops to neutralise terrorists in northeast
• Operate Within International Best Practices, Theatre Commander Charges Group
The Acting General Officer Commanding (GOC), 7 Division, Nigerian Army, Brig-Gen. Abdulwahab Eyitayo, has urged troops of Operation Hadin Kai (OPHK) to rout remnants of Boko Haram terrorists in the Northeast.
According to him, insurgents are still hibernating in Sambisa Forests and the Lake Chad region bordering Niger, Chad and Cameroun.
Eyitayo gave the directive at the weekend, during an operational tour of army formations in Dikwa and Marte of Borno State.
This is just as the Theatre Commander of Northeast Joint Task Force, Operation Hadin Kai (OPHK), Maj-Gen. Christopher Musa, urged local and international non-governmental (INGOs) organisations to operate within the military’s security rules and guidelines.
According to him, the INGOs’ operations and interventions must be in accordance with global humanitarian procedures.
Musa gave the advice at a maiden interactive session with members of INGOs operating in the Northeast at Maimalari Cantonment Officers’ Mess, Maiduguri.
The 12-year insurgency has claimed 36, 000 lives and property worth $9.2 billion, (N3.42 trillion) in Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states.
While addressing troops of 151 and 152 Task Force Battalions, the 21 Special Brigade, as well as mobile strike team 16, Eitayo said: “I commend your high level of alertness and sustained fighting spirit in the recent encounters with Boko Haram and Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) terrorists.”
Eyitayo, who doubles as the Commander Sector 1, Joint Task Force, OPHK, urged the troops to sustain the momentum and ensure that remnant of terrorists are completely neutralised. He also conveyed the appreciation of the Chief of Army Staff, Maj-Gen. Farouk Yahaya to the troops for sustaining the fight against an insurgency that claimed many lives.
He assured the troops of prompt air support from the Air Task Force (ATF), noting that; “The joint Armed Forces and other security agencies is a force multiplier, essential for operational success.”
The general charged the troop to remain focused, vigilant and committed, promising that those due for rotation will be rotated accordingly.
He also inspected a large cache of arms, ammunition and gun trucks captured from the terrorists.
Musa on his part stressed the need to chart a new course in enhancing Civil-Military Cooperation, noting that this is necessary for stakeholders, in the daunting security and humanitarian situations in the region.
The Commander assured all the NGOs operating within the legal framework of his support. While responding, the Deputy Humanitarian Coordinator, Vincent Melei thanked the Theatre Commander for hosting the forum of INGOs.
He said that this would create a platform for the NGOs to make suggestions on practical ways to ‘monitor and report’ issues as they occur.
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