The Operation Hadarin Daji (OPHD) of the Nigerian Army on Monday handed over to the Zamfara State Government 22 people rescued from their abductors’ hideout at Bimasa forest in the Talata Marafa Local Government Area of the state.
Handing over the 22 kidnap victims, the Force Commander, OPHD, and Acting General Officer Commanding (GOC), 8 Division, Sokoto, Brig-Gen Aminu Bande, represented by Brig-Commander, 1 Brigade Gusau, Brig-Gen Olatokunbo Musliu Bello, said the new operation code-named Operation Accord was launched on June 1 to clear the state of bandits, cattle rustlers, kidnappers and other criminals.
‘The operation is recording successes as many bandits have been neutralised and many kidnapped victims are being rescued,’ he said.
The GOC added that the rescue effort was part of the ongoing military strategic operation aimed at securing the state from the activities of the bandits who have been terrorizing innocent souls in the state for years.
Receiving the 22 victims, governor Bello Mohammed Matawalle assured of his commitments to continue to support security operatives as they worked toward restoring peace and tranquillity in the state.
Matawalle reaffirmed his earlier position of using a ‘stick-and-carrot’ approach in the fight against banditry.
‘Those who want peace will see peace while those unrepentant or recreant bandits will be dealt with decisively,’ he said.
Matawalle, represented by the state Commissioner for Security and Home Affairs, Alhaji Abubakar Muhammad Dauran, commended the efforts of the joint security operatives for the continued surveillance and rescue in the state.
Seventeen of the 22 victims are from Sokoto State while the remaining 5 are indigenes of Zamfara.