By Ismail Auwal
Nigerian Air force ( NAF) have killed another notorious bandit kingpin, and 17 others in an air strikes in Kaduna.
NAF has also succeeded in rescuing over 26 kidnapped victims.
According to a statement by NAF director of public relations and information, Edward Gabkwet, the kingpin identified as Alhaji Shanono was killed on Tuesday, following intelligence reports that he had scheduled a meeting with his foot soldiers at Ukambo, a village about 131 kilometres from Kaduna.
He said over 30 rifles and 20 motorcycles were destroyed during the airstrike.
Gabkwet said, similar strikes were also undertaken in the north-east, adding that the air component of operation Hadin Kai has been fully engaged to conduct air missions on insurgents in Borno state.
“One of such operations was conducted on 6 August 2022 at Gazuwa, about 1.2 kilometers to Gargash, after intelligence revealed that infighting for relevance and supremacy was underway between terrorists of the Shekau faction and terrorists aligned to Islamic State of West Africa (ISWAP),” the statement reads.
“The state of confusion and disorder among the two terrorists’ factions thus presented an opportunity for a surprise strike by NAF pilots which was carried out using two aircraft types.”
“It should be noted that though the map coordinates led the pilots to the exact site of the infighting, the location also had an ISWAP flag hoisted on the structure and three solar panels on the rooftop,” the statement reads.
Intelligence received and corroborated by local sources revealed the strike was a success as the terrorists did not anticipate it, with several of them eliminated and others injured.”
Gabkwet said Oladayo Amao, the chief of air staff, who was in Kaduna on Wednesday to review the operations, gave further directives to troops and reminded them of the need to remain steadfast and focused on the task ahead.
“We can’t afford to let down our guard,” the CAS was quoted as saying.
“In the north-west specifically, the effect of strikes undertaken by NAF aircraft have revealed that several terrorists have been eliminated and their enclaves destroyed.“