Troops of Operation Hadarin Daji have rescued 23 kidnapped victims comprising 18 women and five children in Katsina State, the Defence Headquarters has said.
The Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. John Enenche, in a statement on Wednesday, said the rescue operation took place on Tuesday at Wurma Village in Kurfi Local Government Area of the state.
Enenche said the troop also recovered 75 rustled livestock during the operation.
He said troops in conjunction with personnel of the Nigeria Police Force swiftly mobilised to the location following credible information on the bandits’ activities in the village.
According to him, the troops engaged the bandits who had kidnapped some locals and rustled some livestock from Kwayawa Village in Safana Local Government Area.
“With superior firepower and support by Nigerian Air Force helicopter gunship, the armed bandits were forced to abandon the kidnapped victims.
“Consequently, troops rescued 18 women and five children as well as recovered 75 rustled livestock.
“During the encounter, troops also arrested one informant of the bandits named, Mohammed Saleh along with some arms and ammunition.
“The rescued kidnapped victims have been successfully reunited with their families and the recovered livestock handed over to the owners.
“The arrested bandits’ informant has been handed over to appropriate prosecuting agency for further action,” he said.
The Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai has said the Nigerian Army will sustain the tempo of the ongoing fight against insurgency in the North-East.
Buratai gave the assurance yesterday when he visited the Emir of Biu, Alhaji Mustapha Umar Mustapha, in his palace.
He said the visit was part of his operational visits to the theatre of Operation Lafiya Dole to encourage the troops.
According to him, the Nigerian Army is very much alive to its responsibilities and will continue to do its best to end terrorism and other security challenges facing the country.
While commiserating with the people of the emirate council over the recent attacks by insurgents on some communities, Buratai said that the military had taken appropriate steps to address the menace.
He commended the emirate for its support to the troops and urged the people to sustain it.
Responding, the Emir praised the COAS and the Nigerian Army for the numerous developmental projects being executed in the emirate.
The Birma of Biu, Alhaji Ibrahim Shehu, who spoke on behalf of the emir, said the establishment of the army university in Biu had created lots of employment opportunities for the youth.
The emir, according to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), said the emirate would continue to support the army in prayers.
“We do appreciate your kind gesture to our society and we remain grateful to you and rest assured that we would continue to pray for you,” he said.