30 Bandits, NAF Personnel Killed in Zamfara

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Three special forces’ operatives injured

By Kingsley Nwezeh

Troops of Operation Hadarin Daji yesterday clashed with armed bandits at Maje Riverline near Yar Katsina in Bungudu Local Government Area of Zamfara State killing 30 bandits.

A military update said one special forces operative was killed while four others were wounded during the encounter.

It said the clash followed reports that scores of armed bandits along with a large number of rustled livestock were spotted heading towards Kekuwuje-Yar Kastina Road.

The situation prompted troops from Forward Operating Bases (FOBs) at Kekuwuje, Kwatarkwashi and Maru, comprised mostly of Nigerian Air Force (NAF) Special Forces (SF) personnel, to be mobilised to the area.

The troops made contact with the armed bandits along the Yar Katsina Road and overpowered them with superior firepower in the ensuing gun battle.

“The troops subsequently pursued the bandits and cornered them at the Maje Riverline, neutralising 30 of them,” it said.

The update signed by the Spokesman of the Nigerian Air Force, Air Vice Marshal Ibikunle Daramola, said one NAF special forces’ operative was killed.

“Unfortunately, one NAF SF personnel, Aircraftman Sunday Enwa, who fought gallantly during the encounter paid the supreme price while three others who sustained gunshot wounds during the operation have been evacuated for medical treatment”, it said.

Following the development, the air force boss commiserated with families of the fallen and wounded personnel.

“On behalf all officers, airmen, airwomen and civilian staff of the NAF, the Chief of the Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, commiserates with the family of the fallen hero and prays that the Almighty God grants his soul peaceful repose.

“The CAS also urges all NAF personnel to remain resolute and continue to work assiduously, in synergy with sister services and other security agencies, to rid the North-west of all criminal elements,” it said.

Similarly, troops deployed at Maradun received information of reprisal attack by armed bandits at Janbako village in Maradun LGA of Zamfara State.

Troops swiftly mobilised to the area to forestall the reprisal attack.

An update issued by the Coordinator of the Defence Media Operations (DDMO), Major General John Enenche, said troops were ambushed around Janbako village where a fire-fight ensued.

It said gallant troops overwhelmed the bandits and neutralised five of them while stating that troops were in pursuit of fleeing bandits.

In another development, following a tip off, two suspected bandits’ collaborators named Mustapha Sani and Murtala Sani were arrested at Dungun Muazu village in Sabuwa LGA of Katsina State.

The statement said the suspects were in custody for further action.