Troops Intercept Notorious Kidnap Kingpins in Anambra, Oyo, Katsina

Ikechukwu Aleke in Abuja

The High Command of the Nigerian Army has said its troops deployed for counterterrorism operations across the country, in a series of coordinated operations, intercepted and foiled the nefarious activities of notorious kidnap kingpins in Anambra, Oyo, and Katsina States, while dealing a significant blow to criminal elements in the regions.

A statement by the Nigerian Army, said troops on patrol successfully intercepted and arrested two suspected IPOB/ESN members identified as Ifeanyi Godwin and Uche Onuoha, in a Toyota Highlander SUV near Umunze, Orumba South Local Government Area (LGA) of Anambra State.

“The suspects were found in possession of two pump action rifles, 41 cartridges, a hand held communication radio, and fetish objects. Further investigations revealed their involvement in criminal activities and have been on the Nigeria Police Wanted list since 2023,” the statement disclosed.

The Nigerian Army also disclosed that preliminary investigations further revealed that Ifeanyi Godwin allegedly owned a hotel from proceeds of kidnapping used as an IPOB/ESN operations base.

In a related development,   the service noted that troops acting on credible intelligence raided the residence of a suspected kidnap kingpin identified as Bello Chikidawoje in Bodija Area of Ibadan North LGA of Oyo State.

According to the statement, the operation led to the recovery of two AK-47 rifles, magazines loaded with ammunition, and additional rounds buried inside an animal’s cage. Efforts were underway to apprehend Bello Chikidawoje and dismantle his criminal network.

In a separate operation in Katsina State, troops responded to a distress call about terrorists blocking the road in Ruma Yargamji, Batsari.

The army, however, noted that the swift action by the troops compelled the terrorists to flee, resulting in the recovery of three empty AK-47 magazines along their withdrawal route.

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