Yenagoa - The Joint Military Task Force
in the Niger Delta, Operation Delta SAFE, has arrested two militant leaders and
discovered three human skulls in the ongoing military operations.
Lt.-Cdr. Thomas Otuji, the Spokesman of the taskforce said
that troops raided a shrine used by militants and discovered the three human
Otuji, via a statement made available to newsmen on Friday
in Yenagoa, said troops raided five shrines at Debe and Ikot Ofing in Akpabuyo
Local Government Area of Cross River on Thursday.
He said that troops on covert operation in Esighi waterside
of Cross River apprehended a suspected militants’ leader found with charms,
while another suspected leader was picked up at a hideout in Ikpa Road, Uyo.
Otuji also said that the air component of the Operation
Delta SAFE during a reconnaissance patrol at Onne in Rivers, sighted barges of
15,000 litres of petrol concealed with green grass.
The troops also arrested three oil thieves operating illegal
refineries at Bennet Island, Asugbo, in Warri South Local Government Area of
He said that the oil thieves had connected a hose linking
the site to a wellhead from where crude was siphoned.
Also read: 4 men caught carrying a human skull in Enugu
Otuji said that a locally made gun, five live cartridges, a
crude laden wooden boat storage tank, seven speed boats with outboard engines
were seized at the site.
He said that a kidnap victim, Mrs Roseline Duku who was
abducted by gunmen at Afiesere junction in Ugheli North Local Government Area
was rescued by troops in response to a distress call.
Otuji said the victim’s RAV 4 car with registration number
FST 927 was however, abandoned by her abductors along Ejode Road in Ughelli
while being pursued by troops.
“Troops in conjunction with the police and local vigilance
group rescued the victim at Ekapkamre, Ugheli North LGA, Delta.
“Furthermore, troops deployed at Koluama in Bayelsa trailed
and arrested a notorious pirate known as Labiesta, who attacked innocent
citizen s at Ogubene creeks,” he added.
Otuji said that the militant had been on the wanted list of
Otuji noted that the successes recorded by the troops in the
ongoing operation were traceable to the timely information provided by members
of the public and resilience of the troops.
He restated the commitment of the troops to degrade the
capacity of criminals in the Niger Delta region and pledged to provide a safe
environment for legitimate business to thrive in the region.