*Intensifies Operation Against Militants
29 May 2016, Abuja — The Nigerian military says it has successfully averted planned attacks by the resurgent militants at oil pipelines in parts of the Niger Delta.
The Director of Army Public Relations said that the troops of 343 Artillery Regiment of 2 Brigade, 82 Division of the Nigerian Army, in the early hours of Sunday morning carried out patrol within the general area of Gulobokri and Eweleso, around Brass area in Bayelsa State.
Usman noted that during the exercise, the patrol team had an encounter with some armed militants in two-speed boats with intent to blow up Nigerian Agip Oil Company (NAOC) pipeline at Gulobokri.
He said that the suspected vandals opened fire on the patrol team and “the troops responded with overwhelming superior firepower and as a result, the suspected criminals sped off from the area with many of them sustaining gunshot wounds”.
He said that there was no casualty on the patrol team, except a personnel of Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, attached to the team who sustained a gunshot wound.
He, however, disclosed that the victim has since been evacuated and he is in a stable condition.
In a related development, Usman said that another patrol team of the same unit of 82 Division Nigerian Army on patrol to Perigbene House Boat (HB) also encountered three-speed boats suspected to be containing militants about to attack another critical infrastructure in the area.
He said that the troops opened fire on them, killing most of them and injuring others.
“However, the casualty on militants cannot be ascertained as it was raining heavily and the raging storm could not allow troops to go in pursuit of the escaping criminals,” he stated.
*Senator Iroegbu – Thisday