Abuja — Defence Headquarters (DHQ) yesterday ordered the deployment of more blocking forces in Zamfara, Sokoto, Kaduna, Kebbi and Niger states in order to deny armed bandits operational access in the sates.
Addressing troops of Exercise Sahel Sanity during an operational tour of Katsina State, the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Abayomi Olonisakin, directed the consolidation of more blocking troops in the North-west states in order to deny the bandits ease of movement.
Olonisakin, who visited the Nigerian Army Super Camp 4 in Faskari Katsina State, received operational briefing on Operation Sahel Sanity.
He noted that though he urged that the "Step-up Headquarters is in Faskari in Katsina State, there is need to consolidate on putting up blocking forces in the contiguous states of Kaduna, Kebbi, Niger, Sokoto and Zamfara so that the criminals will not have ease of action or movement".
"I am happy to note this operation is not limited to Katsina and Zamfara states, as you have already assigned blocking forces in the contiguous states of Kaduna, kebbi, Niger Sokoto and Zamfara states and I urge you to consolidate on that to deny the bandits ease of action and movement".
He commended the Nigerian Army and and other services for protecting the sovereignty, territorial intergrity of Nigeria and checkmating banditry activities in the North-west.
"From the briefing I received and what I saw, there is no doubt banditry will soon be a thing of the past in Nigeria", he said.
Olonisakin said he was impressed with the level of preparedness for the operation and the layout of the super camp.
He, therefore, commended the initiative of the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, for the Super Camp concept and the commitment and resilience of all the personnel taking part in the exercise.
Earlier in his welcome address Buratai thanked the CDS for finding time to visit the troops which was a morale booster to the troops on the exercise and the entire officers and men of the Nigerian Army.
He assured the CDS of the readiness, commitment, determination and loyalty of the Nigerian Army to combat all forms of security challenges facing the nation.
Olonisakin was accompanied on the visit by the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok Ete Ibas, represented by Rear Admiral TT Dakwat and Chief of Air Staff, Air Vice Marshal Sadiq Baba Abubakar represented by Air Vice Marshall IO Amao.