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Soldier runs amok, kills colleague, humanitarian worker, injures pilot

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Soldier runs amok, kills colleague, humanitarian worker, injures pilot

Soldier runs amok, kills colleague, humanitarian worker, injures pilot

A soldier of the 25 Task Force Brigade in Borno ran amok on Thursday and shot a female humanitarian aid worker to death while injuring a UN pilot.

The soldier also killed one of his colleagues who tried to disarm him.

Reports said he would have taken more lives, but for the quick intervention of his colleagues who neutralised him.

Reacting to the incident, the Theatre Command of “Operation HADIN KAI’’, expressed regret at the sad occurrence at one of its military bases.

Samson Zhakom, assistant director, Army Public Relations, said the soldier shot and killed a staff member of one of the NGOs providing humanitarian support in the North-east.

“Same soldier also killed another soldier and injured the co-pilot of one of the UN helicopters. Own troops on the ground immediately neutralised the errant personnel,’’ Mr Zhakom, a major, said.

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He explained that the injured co-pilot had been stabilised while the corpses of the deceased have been moved to the 7 Division Hospital.

He added that detailed investigation into the incident and subsequent remedial actions had started.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) gathered that the soldier walked off his base in a remote town of Damboa in Borno, on Thursday and went on a shooting spree using an Ak47 riffle.

The development compelled humanitarian workers of an international non-governmental organisation waiting at the military base to board a helicopter back to Maiduguri to scamper to safety.

One of the humanitarian agencies’ workers, Abdulkareem Ibrahim, told NAN that the soldier emptied his magazine and after realising that he had ran out of bullets, he brought out a jack knife.

“He stabbed a female staff of one of the international NGOs four times, killing her before injuring the helicopter pilot,’’ Mr Ibrahim said.

He added that the rampaging soldier again turned and chased his colleagues before he was gunned down to prevent further disaster.

He said the pilots and the crew were safely back to Maiduguri while efforts were on-going to stabilise the wounded co-pilot at the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital.

An official familiar with the matter said due to the incident, the United Nations Humanitarian Assistance team has suspended all helicopter missions to and from the operations area till further notice.

Narrating the incident, an official familiar with the matter said, “An armed soldier came from no where, started shooting at pilots and passengers.

“He shot a pilot, stabbed a passenger to death and also killed a fellow soldier.

“At the moment, the atmosphere is tensed here The soldier reportedly went to the helipad while raining insult on the air crew and humanitarians calling them all sorts of names.

“All of a sudden he opened fire on the captain (pilot) who tried to escape it is still uncertain if the pilot was injured or not.

“After that he (soldier) turned towards the humanitarians and started firing. The humanitarians took to their heels and scampered for safety.

“While they were running, one of the MDM staff (an expat) fell to the ground and the soldier came upon her and stabbed her with knife multiple times until she gave up the ghost.

“The other humanitarians took to their heels all over the military base. While the soldier was stabbing the expat, his fellow soldier tried to disarm him but unfortunately he was also stabbed to death.

“The military authority immediately gave a standing order and the perpetrator (soldier) was gunned down.”

Commenting on the incident in a short interview with PREMIUM TIMES Friday morning, a top army officer said, “We should not only report this incident but it should also be an opportunity for deep conversation by all on the mental health of people handling guns, issues of battle fatigue and regular rotation of troops from high intensity operation and PTSD management.”

Soldier runs amok, kills colleague, humanitarian worker, injures pilot

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Defence & Security

Military making operational adjustment to protect farmers – DHQ

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Military making operational adjustment to protect farmers – DHQ

Military making operational adjustment to protect farmers – DHQ

By Sumaila Ogbaje

The Defence Headquarters says operational adjustments have been made by the military to prioritise protection for farmers to ensure a successful rainy season farming.

The Director, Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. Edward Buba, made this known on Friday in Abuja while giving updates on the operations of the armed forces.

Buba said the armed forces had intensified intelligence collection effort targeted at hunting terrorists and striking them where they may be hiding and hibernating.

He said the aim was to eliminate the terrorists and the infrastructure that supports their activities.

According to him, troops will continue to employ significant firepower to neutralise terrorists and disrupt their activities across the country.

“Winning the war against the terrorist is non-negotiable,” he said.

Buba said the troops had, in different operations, neutralised 220, apprehended 395 suspects and rescued 202 kidnapped hostages in the last one week.

He added that troops recovered 432 assorted weapons and 9,004 assorted ammunition comprising three PKT guns, one G3 rifle, 83 AK47 rifles and 18 locally-fabricated guns.

Also recovered were 16 dane guns, 14 RPG bombs, one RPG launcher, two tear gas launchers, 234 smoke grenades and one bandolier.

Others include 5,893 rounds of 7.62mm special ammo, 2,064 rounds of 7.62mm NATO, 401 rounds of 9mm ammo, 200 rounds of 7.62 x 54mm, 154 rounds of 7.62 x 51mm, 195 live cartridges, and 17 magazines.

In the North-East, Buba said, the troops of Operation Hadin Kai neutralised 83 terrorists, arrested 98 suspects and rescued 61 kidnappers hostages.

Assorted arms were also recovered, he added.

In the North-Central, troops of Operations Safe Haven and Whirl Stroke neutralised 37 insurgents, arrested 102 violent extremists and rescued 113 kidnapped hostages, he said.

In the North-West, Buba said the troops of Operations Hadarin Daji and Whirl Punch, neutralised 78 terrorists, arrested 103 terrorists and rescued 68 kidnapped hostages.

Buba said the troops of Operation Delta Safe in the Niger Delta area discovered and destroyed 105 illegal refining sites with 51 dugout pits, 38 boats and 51 storage tanks.

He said the troops also recovered 215 cooking ovens, two speedboats, 44 drums, three tug boats, three barges, four wheelbarrows, one outboard engine, 15 vehicles, three motorcycles and six mobile phones.

According to him, troops recovered 1.09 million litres of stolen crude oil, 1.1 million litres of illegally refined AGO, 27,350 litres of DPK and 150 litres of PMS.

“Troops also arrested 55 perpetrators of oil theft and denied the oil thieves an estimated sum of N1.8 billion,” he said.

In the South-East, Buba said the troops of Operation UDO KA neutralised 22 terrorists, arrested 37 violent extremists, rescued 15 kidnapped hostages and also recovered a large cache of arms.

Military making operational adjustment to protect farmers – DHQ

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Defence & Security

NAF Set to Establish Permanent Base in Abia State, Boosting Security and Development

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NAF Set to Establish Permanent Base in Abia State, Boosting Security and Development

NAF Set to Establish Permanent Base in Abia State, Boosting Security and Development

The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) is set to establish a permanent presence in Abia State, bolstering security and development in the region. This was announced after a meeting between Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Hasan Abubakar, and Governor Alex Otti on June 7, 2024.

The NAF base will not only enhance airspace security but also provide support in emergency response, disaster management, and community development initiatives. The establishment of the base is timely, as the Federal Government has approved the construction of an air strip in the State, which will accommodate the NAF base.

Governor Otti praised the development, promising temporary facilities and resources for immediate operationalization. He also increased the bounty for information on those responsible for the killing of soldiers in May 2024 from N25 million to N30 million.

The presence of NAF in Abia State is expected to bolster the efforts of other security agencies, ensuring sustainable growth, development, and prosperity for the people of Abia State.

NAF Set to Establish Permanent Base in Abia State, Boosting Security and Development

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Defence & Security

Military restates commitment to defending Nigeria’s sovereignty, says its not involved in aiding terrorism

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Military restates commitment to defending Nigeria’s sovereignty, says its not involved in aiding terrorism

The Armed Forces of Nigeria has restated its commitment to defend the sovereignty of Nigeria while protecting the lives and properties of the citizens against all odds. In a statement responding to a weighty allegation made by the Governor of Katsina State Governor Dikko Radda, the Defence Headquarters emphasized its subordination to elected government representatives and expressed utmost respect for the relationship between the military and civilian authorities while addressing the claims against the Armed Forces of Nigeria (AFN). Governor Radda alleged during an interview on the Channels television programme ‘Politics Today’ on April 5, 2024, that the military is aiding and profiting from terrorism activities in Katsina State.

Director Defence Media Operations, Major General Edward Buba said, in light of Governor Radda’s accusations, the AFN chose not to engage in a public dispute but instead encouraged the Governor to present evidence to the military high command to substantiate his claims.

Led by Chief of Defence Staff General Christopher Musa OFR, the AFN has continued to reiterate its commitment to maintaining discipline and combating criminality during operations nationwide. The military stated that it maintains a zero-tolerance policy for indiscipline and misconduct, with standing court martials in place to address any misbehavior that reflects negatively on the military in the eyes of the public.

Despite the allegations, the AFN asserted its focus on its mission and vowed to continue operations and efforts in the fight against terrorism without being deterred. The military reassured the public that it remains steadfast in its duties and urged citizens to take ownership of the Armed Forces while reporting any observed misconduct within the ranks to the appropriate military justice system.

The AFN called upon media outlets to disseminate this information to raise awareness among the public, emphasizing the collaborative effort required to uphold the integrity and effectiveness of the Nigerian military.

Military restates commitment to defending Nigeria’s sovereignty, says its not involved in aiding terrorism

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