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Nigerian Military Declares Manhunt for Niger Republic Terrorist Operating Goldmine in Zamfara 

A manhunt has been launched for a trans-border fugitive linked to terrorism, arms supply and illegal gold mining in Zamfara.

Nigeria’s military high command on Thursday declared terrorist leader and illegal owner of a gold mine in Zamfara State, Halilu Buzu, wanted.

Buzu hails from Buzu in Republic of Niger. 

It said the fugitive gold miner and cattle rustler, settled in Subbubu Forest and lives in Shinkafi LGA of  Zamfara State. 

At a media briefing in Abuja, the Director, Defence Media Operations (DDMO), Maj Gen Edward Buba, said “his camp and illegal  gold mine are located at Kawayi in Anka LGA of Zamfara State, where he has a lot of boys working for him”.

Buba said “Halilu is a major arms supplier, trusted by arms dealers from supplying arms from Libya. When, troops close in on him, he moves across the border into Republic of Niger for refuge. 

“At this time, we are through appropriate channels calling on the Nigerian authorities to apprehend and hold him accountable for his atrocities.

“These category of terrorists are  relentlessly targeted by troops, such that we will be able to strike them out and take them off the battlefield as soon as possible”, he said.

Buba declared: “It clear that the fate of the terrorist perpetrating insecurity in our nation will be violent and short. Troops will stop at nothing to take them out of the battlefield. 

The troops launched manhunt for senior terrorist leadership, who were of operational importance in terms of coordination of the terrorist attacks against troops and citizens. 

“Troops are also hunting those that of symbolic value including all those declared wanted”, he said. 

He said troops were actively fighting in various theatres of operation across the country and focused on destroying both the military capability as well as the will to fight of the terrorist and their cohorts across the country. 

Accordingly, troops are hunting senior terrorist leadership that are of operational importance in terms of coordination of the terrorist attacks against troops and citizens. Troops are also hunting those that of symbolic value including all those declared wanted. 

He stated that during the week under review, troops neutralised 227 and arrested 529 security liabilities.

“Troops also arrested 11 perpetrators of oil theft and rescued 253 kidnapped hostages. In the SS, troops denied the oil theft of the estimated sum of N1, 312,477, 050.00.

Furthermore, troops recovered 231 assorted weapons and 6,441 assorted ammunition. The breakdown as follows: 89 AK47 rifles, 40 locally fabricated gun, 59 dane guns, 2 pump action guns, 8 locally fabricated pistols, 6 x 36 hand grenade, 3 IED, one RPG 7 tubes, one RPG 7 charger, 4 AGL rounds, one barrel of QJC Gun, one barrel of PKT with receiver, one barrel of Dushka Gun, 250kg bombs used by NATO and Eastern Bloc aircraft and one MRAP. 

Others are: 4,198 rounds of 7.62mm special ammo, 841 rounds of 7.62mm NATO, 88 rounds of 5.56mm, 16 rounds of 7.62 x 39mm, 99 rounds of 7.62 x 51mm, 956 rounds of 7.62 x 54mm, 242 live cartridges, one PKM magazine, 24 magazines, 6 baofeng radios, 8 vehicles, 69 motorcycles, 66 mobile phones, 12 cutlasses and the sum of N1,630,000.00 only amongst other items.

He said troops in the Niger Delta area discovered and destroyed 18 dugout pits, 34 boats, 5 drums, 4 receiver, 4 reservoirs and 97 storage tanks.  Other items recovered include 198 cooking ovens, 9 vehicles, 3 pumping machines, 2 speedboats, one outboard engine and 57 illegal refining sites.  

“Troops recovered 1,442,700 litres of stolen crude oil and 154,650 litres of illegally refined AGO”, he said.

Kingsley Nwezeh

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