The Nigerian Army on Saturday embarked on sanitation exercise at Toto market in Toto Local Government Area of Nasarawa State.
The environmental sanitation carried out by the officers and soldiers of the brigade involved clearing of garbage and refuse in and around the market as well as clearing of drainages on major roads in the town.
Speaking on the exercise, the Commander, Guard Brigade, Brig.-Gen. Muhammed Usman, represented by his Chief of Staff, Col. Kassim Sidi, said that the exercise was part of activities of Exercise Ayem Akpatuma II 2019.
Usman said the exercise was aimed at creating a secured environment for the people to go about their normal businesses during the months of festivities.
According to him, part of the activities we lined up is civil military cooperation where you see the military coming into the society to render certain assistance to endear us to the larger society.
“The sanitation which we have just conducted this morning is part of it.
“There are many activities lined up such as medical outreach, educational aid distribution to schools, sports, visitation to hospitals and correctional facilities to mention a few.
“We want the society to believe that the military is part of them. We don’t want to appear hostile to them, we want them to feel free with us, mix with us and also know that we have something to offer to give back to them.
“So, this is what we are building on and what we shall continue to do in subsequent exercises,” he said.
Usman explained that the exercise was created by the army headquarters to address security challenges in parts of the country.
He disclosed that the activities of kidnappers had reduced in Toto general area since the arrival and setting up super camp at Kukia-Sabo.
According to him, by the time we are through with this exercise in January, we will have zero or close to zero criminal activities in this area.
He commended the officers and soldiers that took part in the sanitation exercise, saying that the army had the mandate to give back to the society.
On his part, the Chairman of Toto Local Government Area, Prince Nuhu Dauda, said that the presence of the military and other security agencies in his local government had brought comfort to his people.
Dauda added that the recent security threats like kidnapping in the area had been a source of concern, adding that the exercise was welcomed in the area for so many reasons.
The chairman said the sanitation exercise being carried out by the army in Toto market was a confidence booster that the military and the civilians could relate peacefully.
He added that ordinary Nigerians usually looked at military men as unfriendly people, saying that the exercise had enhanced civil military relations and friendliness.
“The presence of the military in my local government is a comfort to my heart and my people.
“Toto local government used to be a peaceful and friendly local government but for sometimes now, there have been activities of criminals especially the activities of kidnappers that have become rampant all over the country but your home is where you know.
“Precisely I know that if Toto is safe, a segment of Nasarawa state is safe and also a segment of Nigeria is safe and that is why I am very happy.
“On the community service, I want to tell you that I am very happy with the sanitation exercise because the surroundings where the market is, requires cleaning and the army has brought this intervention,” he said.
The Chief Market Overseer, Toto Market, Mr Adugu Ibrahim, commended the army for the exercise, describing it as a rare opportunity for the military to clean a local market.
Ibrahim said that the presence of the military in the community had encouraged the locals to go about their normal businesses without fear of insecurity.
He said that kidnapping had been a challenging threat in the area in recent time, adding that the people were ready to cooperate with the army by providing useful information.
According to him, they will make sure that the traders continue to consolidate on the exercise to enhance the sanitation of the market.
“We are very happy with this activities because it shows that the military is concerned about our security and well being because health is very important,” he said.
Also, Musa Maikaya, Youth Leader, called on the government to create a permanent military base in the area to address the challenge of insecurity.
“We have challenge of kidnapping here and we hope that with the presence of the military now, things will change,” he said.
Nigeria News Agency , reports that the representative of the Commander, Sidi, led the Chairman of the local government to the Kukia- Sabo Super Camp to visit the troops.
The super camp is being coordinated by the army in collaboration with other security agencies such as the police and immigration.
Edited by Abiemwense Moru/Ismail Abdulaziz
Suspected robbers kill one in Makurdi -Police
The State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), DSP Catherine Anene, told Nigeria News Agency in Makurdi that the incident took place at Asase I, by SRS Junction North Bank around 4 a.m. on Thursday morning.
She said that the gunmen came in form of armed robbers and killed the victim at his residence at Asase I.
The PPRO further disclosed that the Command has commenced investigation into the matter and urged the public with useful information to come forward with it as they would be shielded.
Ugela further expressed the company’s deepest condolences over the lost.
Unknown persons kill 2 security guards in Benue -Police
Anene explained that the guards were attacked at their place of work at a fish pond belonging to Steam Fast Foods.
Nigeria News Agency reports that the land where the fish pond was situated was in dispute and in court.
Air operation aims to degrade Boko Haram -CAS
The Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadiq Abubakar, says the service has fully begun air operation code named “Operation Rattle Snake’’ to finally wipe out remnant of Boko Haram insurgents in the North East.
He said the visit was to appraise the progress of the operation, interact with personnel and encourage them in the execution of the air campaign against the insurgents.
The idea of the operation Rattle Snake is to further deal with the issue of terrorism in the northeast and give necessary support to the ground troops of the Operation Lafiya Dole (OPLD) and Multi National Joint Task Force (MNJTF).
From the briefs; I am happy with the progress so far made, we have identified a number of targets, neutralised them and it will continue.
The rate of efforts now is much more than what we used to have in other operations. We have quite a number of airplanes and many more will be deployed to support the operation.
The idea is to take full advantage of the situation on ground to degrade Boko Haram insurgents and ensure a secured country,” Abubakar said.
The campaign targets selected locations in the region to further degrade remnants of the insurgents.
Army says video of Boko Haram killing of soldiers fabrication of IPOB
The Nigerian Army says the recent video clip allegedly released by Boko Haram terrorists portraying capture and killing of some Nigerian soldiers was the fabrication of the outlawed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).
The Acting Director, Army Public Relations, Col. Sagir Musa, in a statement on Wednesday said that the video was not an occurrence that took place in Nigeria.
He urged the public and personnel of Nigerian army, especially those in the North East theatre of operation, to disregard the video.
According to him, it is a video concocted to cause disunity and fragmentation of Nigeria.
Accordingly, the call by one Simon Ekpa, (the principal actor in the clip), calling on soldiers of South East extraction presently serving in the North East to desert the Army and return to Biafra proved it.
Also, the call on South Easterners not to join the Nigerian Army is an obvious indication of the essence and objective of the masterminds of this fake video which should be discountenanced by the public.
Meanwhile the leadership of the Nigerian Army wish to also reiterate its unflinching commitment to sustain the war against terrorism.
It shall not be deterred by the evil machinations or propagandist activities of mischievous persons whose main interest is the disunity of our beloved nation,” he said.
Nigeria News Agency recalls that a video purportedly released by the terrorists portraying the stage showing the capture and killing of some Nigerian soldiers by the terrorists group went viral on social media on Tuesday.
2020: All Africans can come to Nigeria without visa – Babandede
The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) says the Federal Government have approved that all Africans could come to Nigeria without Visa from January 2020.
Nigeria News Agency reports that European border and Coast guard Agency also known as Frontex is an agency of European Union (EU) tasked with border control of the European Schengen Area, in coordination with border and coast guard of Schengen area member states.
The announcement would be made soon by the President of the Federation.
”But we cannot succeed without a tool like AFIC. This tool is keen if we want to implement an effective free movement across our border.
The tool is actually coming at the right time. AFIC would help African countries especially Nigeria that want to open its border for all Africans to enter at will. And now that tool is available, it would make the work easier for us,” he said.
Babandede said that it was important to acknowledge the different forces in Nigeria curbing crime and insecurity.
But our duty is unique and you may not see it as it is in Chad, Benin or Cameroon.
The essence is that we are very keen and we have been working with EU for a long time. Frontex is in charge of border before they got another responsibility called coast guard which is also very keen to Africa especially checking member state of ECOWAS,” he said.
I was opportune to be at the Frontex headquarters, and I came with useful tools which are for border and control centre.
”This has brought about the building of border and control centre which will be inaugurated next year. So the analytical system from Frontex, border control system and even mobility would all be in one place,” he said.
Babandede assured the delegates that the service would maintain the equipments and called for more training of officers.
We assure you of the site maintenance if we have a technical know how of maintaining this system. We have done that with IOM very well.
”All the equipments donated for e-Migrants registration are already been installed by all our trained officers,” he said.
Roman Fantini, the head of sector, Frontex, assured the immigration service of training the officers as requested to help maintain the system and usage.
Fantini said that AFIC was not a new development as it started nine years ago and had since grown to what it was today.
Ms Eleni Zerzelidou, EU head of delegates, appreciated the immigration service for beefing up the collaboration by taking a step further to ensure border opening for all Africans by 2020.
Zerzelidou added that the EU would continually support the service in delivering its mandate and ensuring the safety of the country.
“But we believe Frontex would do more to compliment all we have done so far in assisting the service and the county at large,” she said.
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