Yekini Jimoh in Lokoja
The Nigerian Army saturday disclosed that they have launched operation â€˜Deep Punchâ€™ to clear remnants of Boko Haram in Sambisa forest, in an effort to flush out Boko Haram from the North East.
The Chief of Army Staff (CoAS), Lt-General Tukur Buratai made this known saturday in Okene, Kogi State during the unveiling of the Forward Operational Base constructed by the Kogi State government.
According to him, the launch of Operation â€˜Deep Punchâ€™ followed the successful decimation of insurgents in the zone and the members have been charged with the responsibility of clearing the remnants of the terrorist group and restoring normalcy to the zone.
â€œFollowing the successful decimation of Boko Haram insurgency in the North-east the Nigerian Army has launched Operation Deep Punch to clear Sambisa forest of the remnants of already weakened insurgents to pave way for return of normalcy to the zone,â€ he said.
The Army chief, who was represented by the Director, Training and doctrine command, Major-General R.O Yusuf said no meaningful socio-economic activities could take place in the atmosphere of criminality, adding that â€œthis is the reason Nigerian Army would continue to be grateful to the Kogi State governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello for making security top priority project in his new direction agenda.â€
While promising that the Army would put the facility to good use, he also called for cooperation in the area of providing useful information that would help in combating crimes in the state.
Earlier, governor Bello had noted that the security situation and its environs was at an alarming stage when he took over on 2016. According to him, Kogi state recorded over 50 per cent of the total kidnap cases in Nigeria between 2015 and 2016.
He stressed that the facility donated to the military if effectively used would lead to zero incidences of armed robbery, kidnapping, communal clashes and farmer versus herdsmen face-off.
Governor Bello also disclosed that a total of N204,668,000 was expended on the construction of the forward operational base.