28 July 2016, Sweetcrude, Abuja – The Joint Military Force deployed to the Niger Delta, Operation Delta Safe, has restated its preparedness to deal with the renewed violence by militants in the oil-rich Niger Delta region.
Rear Admiral Joseph Okojie, Commander of the operation, who made this known at a news conference on Wednesday, said that the military has the capacity to flush out militants but was compelled to respect the dialogue option adopted by the Federal Government.
The Defence Headquarters had scaled down military option and declared a ceasefire to pave the way for dialogue with the militants.
President Muhammadu Buhari had last week told the outgoing German Ambassador that the Federal Government was in talks with the Niger Delta militants.
Okojie, who said that the operation enjoyed the support of the military top brass and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, had been effectively curtailing collateral damage to oil infrastructure in the region.
He urged the media to be objective and professional in reporting of the security challenges in the region, as the military would continue to keep its mandate of providing a safe environment for economic prosperity.
“We have seen reports emanating from faceless sources that tend to compromise national security in the mainstream media and want to restate our commitment to the mandate given to Operation Delta Safe.
“Our mandate does not include engagement in propaganda with any interest and wish to restate that the territorial integrity of our country is sacrosanct.
“We implore the media to rise to the occasion and subject their security related stories to the dictates of their professional ethics,” Okojie said.