Troops recover N448.3m stolen crude and gas oil, 17 AK47 rifles; neutralize 42 terrorists

General Lucky Irabor, Chief of Defence Staff

By TOM CHIAHEMEN, Abuja –

The fight against oil theft and other criminal elements in the South-South zone of the country has continued to yield results as troops of the Armed Forces of Nigeria have, in the last two weeks, recovered 551,500 litres of crude oil and 394,500 litres of Automotive Gas Oil and other stolen products valued at N448,387,770.00.

Director, Defence Media Operations (DMO), Major General Musa Danmadami, who made this known in Abuja on Thursday, also said that troops of Operation DELTA SAFE, in the conduct of Operation OCTOPUS GRIP and other operations within the zone, discovered and destroyed 38 illegal refining sites, 24 wooden boats, 169 storage tanks, 152 ovens and 19 dugout pits.

Briefing the media on the operational activities of the Armed Forces of Nigeria and other security agencies conducted in addressing the various security challenges across the Country between the period of 4 – 18 May 2023, Major General Danmadami further disclosed that a total of 42 Boko Haram/ISWAP and IPOB/ESN terrorists were neutralized and 102 other suspected criminals and economic saboteurs were arrested, while 15 kidnapped civilians including one of the abducted Chibok school girls, were rescued.

He added that within the same period, 17 AK47 rifles and large quantities of Improvised Explosive Device (IED) making materials were recovered while a total of 511 Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists and members of their families surrendered to the Nigerian troops.

Specifically, Major General Danmadami said that in the North-East zone of the country, troops recovered 17 AK47 rifles, 1 AK49 rifle, 8 SMGs, 15 grenades rifles, 2 pump action guns, 1 LMG, 1 Ma rifle,  4 AA guns, 2 AA barrel, 12 dane guns, 38 AK47 magazines, 2 double barrel guns, 3,896 rounds of .50 inch, 2,189 rounds of 12.7mm, 1,475 rounds of 9mm, 86 rounds of 12.7mm x 108API, 183 rounds of shilka, 60 rounds of 40mm BGL, 2 rounds of 7.62mm x 39 B/SP, 34 cartons of sig pistol, 125 RPG bombs, 52 x 36 hand grenade, 5 SMK bombs, 13 RPG tubes, 8 x 76mm bombs, 130 SMK grenade (tear gas) 13 x PG 42 grenade, and 247 rounds of 38mm SMK bombs.

Others include 15 RPG tail pin, 275 rounds of 7.62mm special, 163 rounds of 7.62mm NATO, 440 rounds of 7.62 x 54mm ammo, 364 rounds of 7.62 x 50mm NATO, 234 rounds of AK49 ammo, 1 G3 skeletal weapon, 2 AK47 working parts, 2 mortar bombs, 2 x 60mm mortar tube, 1 shoulder grenade launcher, 8 propeller charger (155 gun), 2 vickers MBT bore sighting equipment, 1 charge for 125mm, 4 PKT 73mm, PG9 base, 3 fuse for 105, 2 crap for AK47 rifle (police type), 1 scrap FN magazine, 194 fuse for 122mm D30 HW bombs, 41 fuse for 155mm bombs, 20 fuse for 82mm mortar, 5 illum fuse, 1 tripod stand, 6 non electric detonator, 1 tool box containing several weapon parts, 1 SPG stand, 1 lister generator, 1 welding machine, 1 water heater, 1 exhaust, 4 mortar base plates, support weapons spare parts and large quantity of Improvised Explosive Device making materials.   

“Others items recovered include 9 vehicles, 30 mobile phones, 10 motorcycles, 8 bicycles, 4 vehicle tyres, 3 GT tyres, 2 grinding machines, 1 sewing machine, medical supplies, 1 wheel barrow, 30 motor fan belt, 5 bags of grains, 3 bags of sugar, 3 bags of salt, 1 inverter battery, 75 bags of fertilizers, 2 drums of Premium Motor Spirit, 6 gallons of engine oil, 12 hose cables, 8 new tyres, 5 tyre tubes, 13 bicycles chains, 15 bicycles free wheels, 12 air pumps, 8 pedals, 4 brakes, 1 carton of maggi seasoning and the sum of Sixty Nine Thousand Five Hundred and Twenty Naira (N69,520.00) only.

“Troops equally neutralized 26 Boko Haram terrorists/Islamic State of West Africa Province terrorists, arrested 25 terrorists’ logistics suppliers, 1 terrorists spy and 1 Boko Haram terrorist. Troops also rescued 1 kidnapped Chibok School girls. While a total of 511 Boko Haram terrorists/Islamic State of West Africa Province and members of their families comprising of 99 adult male, 161 adult female and 251 children surrendered to troops at different locations within the theatre of operations,” he said.

In the North-Central zone, he said, “troops recovered 3 fabricated rifles, 2 fabricated pistols, 2 dane guns, 6 motorcycles, 1 vehicle and 31 rustled cattle. Troops also neutralize 2 terrorists and arrested 25 suspected criminals.”

Troops in the North West Zone, according to the DMO Director,  “recovered 7 AK47 rifles, 4 dane guns, 2 locally fabricated pistols, 1 improvised rocket launcher, 1 RPG bomb, 74 rounds of 7.62mm special, 108 rounds of 7.62mm NATO, 1 telescopic sight, 10 AK47 magazines, 7 tear gas, 1 fragmental jacket, 12 pairs of woodland camouflage, 3 pairs of combat boots, 6 jungle hats, 1 pair of police uniform, 3 pullover jacket, 6 desert camouflage, 10 desert camouflage T shirt, 14 woodland jungle hats, 16 desert jungle hats and 2 desert boots. Others are 18 mobile phones, 3 leg chains, 3 generator sets, 6 bags of soya beans, 3 crates of soft drinks, 3 bags of bread, 2 SIM cards, 19 motorcycles, 108 rustled cattle and the sum of N82,050.00.

They also neutralized 12 terrorists and arrested 26 suspected criminals as well as rescued 24 kidnapped civilians, he added.

Speaking about the South-East zone, Major General Danmadami said that within the weeks in focus, “troops recovered 8 mobile phones, 4 motorcycles and 1 truck. Troops also neutralized 2 terrorists, arrested 7 suspected terrorist and rescued 4 kidnapped civilians.”

While declaring that the security situation in the South-West zone of the country had remained “relatively calm,” he said the land, maritime and air component of the Joint Task Force Operation DELTA SAFE had sustained the fight against oil theft and other criminal element in the zone.

“Accordingly, troops conducted patrols, raids, anti-illegal oil refining and swap buggies operations at different locations within Bayelsa, Delta and Rivers States respectively, aimed at denying oil theft and other criminal elements freedom of action, thereby creating an enabling environment for economic activities to thrive within the zone,” he said.

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