- Army, DICON sign agreement for vehicle production
Islamic State of West Africa Province (ISWAP) fighters have suffered severe losses in a joint counter-offensive mounted by the Air Task Force (ATF) of the Operation Lafiya Dole and troops of the 89 and 97 Task Force Battalions of Sector 3 at Mallam Fatori on the fringes of the Lake Chad in the Northern part of Borno State.
In a statement by Air Commodore Ibikunle Daramola, Director of Public Relations and Information, Nigerian Air Force, the routing of the terrorists took place Wednesday, 13 November 2019, sequel to intelligence reports on the movement of ISWAP fighters in some gun trucks towards the troops’ location in Mallam Fatori.
In response, the ATF immediately scrambled 2 Nigerian Air Force (NAF) attack aircraft to provide Close Air Support (CAS) as well as an Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) platform, which provided enhanced situational awareness for the ground troops as they engaged the terrorists.
The combined sustained, intensive fire rained on the terrorists, from the air and on the ground, caused them to beat a hasty retreat. This was however not before 2 of their gun trucks were destroyed.
The attack platforms also tracked the fleeing terrorists, further neutralizing some of their fighters as they attempted to escape.
The NAF, operating in concert with surface forces, will sustain its efforts to completely destroy all remnants of the terrorists in the Northeast.
In another development, the Nigerian Army has also formalised agreement with the Defence Industries Corporation of Nigeria/Command Engineering Depot on mass production of 28 Mines Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles for its counter terrorism/insurgency and other operations across the nation.
The Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen Tukur Yusufu Buratai, represented by the Chief of Policy and Plans, ‘Army’ Lt Gen Lamidi Adeosun and the Director General of DICON, Maj Gen Victor Ezugwu at the Army Headquarters Abuja, signed the agreement.
Buratai disclosed that the agreement would enable DICON/CED to roll out the vehicles within a specified period of time.
Also, the North-East Development Commission (NEDC) has assured the Nigerian Army (NA) of its desire and unwavering commitment to repairing roads and other critical infrastructure destroyed as a result of insurgency in North-East.
It’s Chairman Governing Board, Maj Gen Paul Tarfa (rtd), gave the assurance while receiving the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lieutenant General Tukur Yusufu Buratai, and some principal officers of the Army, who paid a courtesy call to the Commission’s office in Abuja today the 12th of November 2019.
According to Gen Tarfa, the leadership of the Army has done a lot in terms of the war against terrorism and insurgency as well as rehabilitating and constructing important infrastructure and other basic amenities that were totally destroyed or affected by Boko Haram terrorists in the last ten years.
While welcoming the COAS, and his delegation, the Chairman, said his commission will support and offer necessary assistance to officers and men of the Army, in a bid to ensure that they effectively prosecute the war against insurgency which is for the common good for all Nigerians.
“The Nigerian Military, especially the Army, is one of our strategic partners in the North-East.
“Indeed, we appreciate the good work the Army is doing in the areas of security, rehabilitating several obsolete amenities and damaged infrastructural facilities.
“It is heartwarming that most of the facilities and buildings, have been rebuilt and new ones constructed by the Army, at several affected communities across the North East Zone.
“These kind gestures done by the Army leadership, have tremendously assisted the traumatized and affected people of Borno, Adamawa, Yobe and other parts of the North-East.
“Once again, we sincerely appreciate what you and your team are doing. And we want to assure you that we will partner with you, and assist you in diverse ways,” he said.
Earlier in his remark, Lt Gen Buratai, said their visit to the Commission is the beginning of good, and beneficial relationship between the Army and NEDC.
He noted that both the Commission and the Army have and are pursuing common national interests and goals, hence there is need for a robust partnership in order to actualise the laudable objectives of the commission.
The COAS, who described members of the recently established Commission as men of impeccable integrity and exceptional administrative pedigree, disclosed that the collapse of several infrastructure in the North-East is impacting negatively on the Army’s operations.
He said: “There are several infrastructure that have been damaged beyond repair in the North-East as a result of Boko Haram’s insurgency.
“On the other hand, several of our military barracks are also dilapidated, and urgently require speedy renovations works to be done on them. Also the families/widows that are left behind by our deceased colleagues require some form of incentives to pursue a worthy meaningful means of livelihood.
“As such, the Commission should strive and look into the problem of collapsed infrastructure in the North-East, especially roads and housing as well as the condition of widows in the Barracks.
“There is need for fundamental steps to be taken to repair the collapsed roads, and other facilities, so as to assist troops prosecute the counter-insurgency war and also decimate the remaining terrorists.”
All the Executive Directors and other members of the commission/Board were present during the visit.
Lt Gen LO Adeosun the Chief of Policy and Plans Army, Commander Engineers Corps Maj Gen JS Malu, Chief of Logistics Army, Maj Gen JI Unuigbe, Coordinator Special duties Office of the Chief of Army Staff Maj Gen SA Yaro and Maj Gen KO Kadiri Group Managing Director Nigerian Army Welfare Ltd/Guaranty also blessed the occasion.
Others are – Commander Budget and accounts of the Nigerian Army Maj Gen AR Bakare, Corps Commander Ordnance Maj Gen OA Akintade, representatives of the Chief of Military Intelligence and Provost Marshall ‘Army’ Brig Gens A Yellow Duke and ME John Okon respectively.