By Dauda R. Pam, Maiduguri
Operation Lafiya Dole, (OPLD), troops of the Nigerian Army in Maiduguri on Sunday swooped on a gang of suspected cultists, alleged to be engaged in armed robbery and kidnapping in the state capital and environs.
According to a statement signed by Deputy Director Army Public Relations, (DDAPR), Colonel Ado Isa, indicated that the scoop was tumbled upon following information received from well meaning individuals, that a gang of suspected cultists,who engage in armed robbery and kidnapping in Maiduguri and environs were arrested, Sunday 22 September, 2019.
He explained that the feat was achieved by troops of the Nigerian Army Super Camp 1 Molai, in line with the Super Camp Concept of the Counter terrorism efforts Of Operation Lafiya Dole (OPLD) in conjunction with other security agencies.
The DDAPR added that, the alleged cultists were about to perform an initiation rite on some new members into their confraternity, when the Army troops and other security personnel stormed their hideout in Maiduguri.
And that, the cultists attempted to flee and escape arrest but was unsuccessful as they were effectively overwhelmed and rounded up by the troops and other security agencies.
Col. Isa said, “the general area has since been cordoned off and 18 members of the cult group, comprising civilians and alleged students of the University of Maiduguri were arrested at the initiation scene including three serving personnel of the Nigerian Army who were also arrested and have since been handed over to the Nigeria Police Force Borno State Command for further investigation and necessary action”.
Just as, “the arrested soldiers have equally been dismissed,after due interrogation in line with military justice system by 7 Division Military Police and handed over to the Borno State Police Command”, as law demands.
According to the release, the Theatre Commander OPLD, Major General Olusegun Adeniyi, Brigadier General AK Ibrahim, Ag GOC, 7 Division, NA and the Commissioner of Police, Director of State Security Service (SSS), as well as other heads of security agencies in Borno State also visited the scene for on-the-spot assessment of the situation.
Troops of OPLD, and other security agencies have since mounted an intensive joint patrol within Maiduguri Metropolitan Council and its environs.
“While we continue to intensify the fight against insurgents and other criminals, members of the general public are once again enjoined to continue to support the security agencies with information that could assist in dealing with the criminals”, the DDAPR said and also appealed to the public to be on the watch out for fleeing terrorists from the Lake Chad area.