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Army Troops Record Success In Niger Delta Operations

Soldiers involved in the "Operation Crocodile Smile" training exercise
Soldiers involved in the “Operation Crocodile Smile” training exercise

The special training exercise embarked upon by the Nigerian Army, in the creeks of the Niger Delta has recorded “tremendous Progress”.

Army Spokesman, Sani Usman, said the troops involved in the exercise nicknamed “Operation Crocodile Smile” has raided suspected criminal hideouts and made a number of arrests.

Areas covered during the exercise include Ajaosolo, Okogho, Opumani, and Obodo general area.

Usman, a colonel said in a statement that “While conducting the exercise, on Sunday 28th August 2016, they (troops) intercepted suspected illegal oil bunkerer with 1 “Cotonou Boat” laden with crude oil, 3 X 40 Horse power Yamaha Speedboats and 5 X 200 Litres of illegally refined diesel oil.

“Similarly, the troops continued conducting the training exercise near Bomadi town, Bomadi Local Government Area and Pendo and Tuomu of Bururtu Local Government Area of Delta State respectively.

“Two suspects; Mr. Tokolo Sawyer and Miss Showman Ebi-ere were arrested at “Loveth Plaze”, while Mr Kingsley Ebidimo and 7 others with unidentified mission were equally arrested at Pendo as they were found to be in possession of substance believed to be Marijuana, 1 Axe, 2 Cutting Saw and a long iron bender in their hideouts.

“The suspects and exhibits have been handed over to the Nigeria Police at Bomadi,” he said.

Usman also said that the troops received more support weapons in the course of the exercise.

They include “Main Battle Tank, 2 Mine-Resistant, Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles and 3 Scorpion Tanks from the Headquarters of Nigerian Armour Corps.”

The army spokesman also said that “the troops  have been carrying out patrols along  waterways in the creeks.

“In that process, they recovered 2 “Cotonou Boats” and a 75 Horse Power Speedboat, 30 X 200 Litres plastic drums containing liquid suspected to be illegally refined crude oil in the creeks at Ovwahwa in Ughelli South Local Government Area of Delta State in the afternoon of Sunday 28th August 2016.

“Three suspected persons, Messrs College Owahwa, Joseph Katte and Olisa Patrick found around the vicinity have been arrested. They are currently being questioned.

“Following intelligence reports, 2 illegal crude oil refineries were identified and destroyed by the exercising troops traversing Ayakoromo and Esaba water ways in Burutu Local Government Area of Delta State.

At about 5.00pm same day, 2 Pumping Machines and sets of new pipes used for the construction of illegal refineries and siphoning were found in the bush.

“Two suspects were interrogated to ascertain their involvement on the recovered items.

Usman said the troops are also carrying out free medical outreaches in Sapele and Warri.

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