Kingsley Nwezeh in Abuja
Military authorities said yesterday that the tempo of the insurgency war had changed, forcing insurgents to avoid direct confrontation with troops and instead focusing on attacking soft targets.
Reviewing military operations between December 31,2020 and January 6, 2021, it said the unwillingness of the terrorists to engage troops was an indication that the tempo of the war had changed in favour of the military.
This comes as it said the Nigerian Navy Ship, DELTA, recovered 350,000 litres of stolen crude oil from illegal bunkerers in the Niger Delta region.
Briefing the media in Abuja, the Coordinator of the Directorate of Defence Media Operations, Major General John Enenche, said a combined surveillance, aerial and ground operations had given the military a path to victory.
“We have discovered that direct encounters between us and the terrorists are on the low side, what it signifies, is that once there is a reduction, it means the game is changing rapidly to the favour of the armed forces of Nigeria and Nigerians at large.
“How have we sustained this, we don’t focus on one source of surveillance or action, we have both ground and air put together and other technical sources. We keep increasing the tempo and changing our style of operation”, he said.
Enenche said: “Whatever we did before is never good for the now and what we are going to do tomorrow, we are on the table constantly planning.
“The surveillance that we maintained through air reconnaissance and intelligence is at the peak in the north and the aggressive patrol of the land forces has made it possible to for them to focus more on soft targets. We are going to ensure that this is improved upon on regular basis”.
On the activities of the troops of Operation Delta Safe, he said they recovered 350, 000 litres of stolen crude oil.
“Within the period under review, acting on credible intelligence, Nigerian Navy Ship DELTA Patrol team located a wooden boat laden with about 200,000 litres of product suspected to be crude oil. Accordingly, the boats along with the product were handled appropriately.
“Equally, Nigerian Navy Ship DELTA patrol team discovered and immobilised an illegal refining site with nine storage tanks and four ovens containing crude oil estimated to be about 150,000 litres at Olaipase Creek in Warri South Local Government Area of Delta Stateit said.
Enenche said the patrol team proceeded further within the same community and located another illegal refinery site with 15 storage tanks and eight ovens laden with substance suspected to be illegally refined AGO estimated to be about 250,000 litres.