On Terror Attacks and Rapid Response of Security Forces
By Mukhtar Ya’u Madobi
The twin horrific incidents of terror attacks at the airport and on the rail in Kaduna State by misguided non-state actors are condemnable and detestable.
Prior to the unwarranted attack at airport, troops had received credible intelligence on the movement of a large number of bandits heading towards Kaduna axis.
The bandit-terrorists were evidently fleeing Niger State as a result of dislodgement from their enclaves due to military offensives following stationing of troops at the Warari community in Rijau Local Government Area. Nevertheless, the security forces were on alert as they engaged them, neutralized scores and equally retrieved a herds of rustled cattle.
Therefore, rattled and agonized by these heavy losses punctured on them by the troops, the bloodsucking demons decided to further disturb the public peace by attempting to invade Kaduna airport through a one terminal wing.
However, their evil plot was foiled as they were dealt decisively by the troops who responded immediately upon receiving the intelligence about their activity.
Meanwhile, the terrorists succeeded in killing a security officer, but twelve of them were eliminated while others escaped with various degrees of injuries.
This was confirmed by the Garrison Commander, 1 Division Nigerian Army, Kaduna, Brig.-Gen. Uriah Opuene when he visited the scene alongside Kaduna State Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, Samuel Aruwan and Air Force Base Commander, Air Commodore Ademuyiwa Adedoyin on Monday, March 28, 2022.
Opuene, while briefing journalists, said there are several layers of security at the airport and that bandits could not have dared to attack it.
According to him, preliminary investigation showed that the bandits were passing through the back of the airport towards Riyawa village, when they sighted the security man engaged by the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency, NAMA, to watch over their meteorological equipment around the axis.
Opuene said, “As you can see, this place is about six kilometres away from the airport terminal. The bandits were only passing behind the airport perimeter fence when they saw the security man engaged by NAMA and they fired at him. They just took advantage of that to pass a message that they have attacked the airport.
Reports indicated that there are several layers of security at the airport and the bandits did not breach any of them.
“Even this first layer was not breached because from the moment of hearing that shot, it took our men just about three minutes to get here from the next layer of security.
“On arrival, the bandits were already running away. So, we engaged them through the use of ground forces. Then we called for an air strike and a helicopter was deployed and from the air report, about 12 of the bandits were killed.”
Now, it is heartwarming to learn that security architecture within and around the airport has been beefed-up so as to avert future occurrence of any form of aggression from criminal elements on the facility.
More so, the derailment of Abuja-Kaduna train by terrorists using explosives to detonate the rail track thereby forcing the locomotives to a halt is another incident that the military did not treat with levity.
Meanwhile, the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) aircraft killed scores of bandit terrorists on Wednesday, March 31, 2022 around the vicinity after the incident.
PRNigeria reported that, after obtaining intelligence on the movement of bandits along the Akilibu – Sarkin Pawa Road, near Mangoro Village, the NAF aircraft quickly engaged terrorists in different waves with rockets while those fleeing were mopped up with canons decisively.
A domestic intelligence operative also confirmed that not less than 34 terrorists were wasted during these multiple airstrikes by the NAF fighter jets.
Additionally, the joint intelligence service has uncovered scores of makeshift facilities and forest settlements, serving as camps for these armed bandits and kidnappers terrorizing travellers along Abuja-Kaduna highway and train routes.
“These locations are abodes to kidnappers, armed bandits, drug addicts, gun runners, prostitutes and fleeing Boko Haram terrorists,” a senior intelligence source revealed.
However, with the recent acquisition of sophisticated Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, the drones by the security forces, this effort will go a long way in improving surveillance and equally ensure precision of attacks on specific targets.
In addition, President Buhari has since directed the immediate conclusion of all the processes for the implementation of the integrated security surveillance and monitoring solution for the Abuja to Kaduna railway line which he said should be extended to cover the Lagos-Ibadan railway line as well.
The directives were given after he received briefs from the Service Chiefs led by the Chief of Defence Staff, General Lucky Irabor, with the Chief of Army Staff, Lt-General Faruk Yahaya, the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Isiaka Amao, the Inspector General of Police, Usman Baba, as well as Major General Samuel Adebayo, the Chief of Defence Intelligence and the Director-General of the Department of State Services, DSS, Yusuf Magaji Bichi respectively.
Again, we should also not forget to commend the military for their swift response as they mobilized to the scene of the Kaduna train attack in spite of all challenges. The presence of the troops was very instrumental in mitigating the damage which might have been further escalated by the miscreant elements.
The former Deputy Governor of Zamfara State, Ibrahim Wakkala who happened to be among the victims, extolled the military for their professionalism, hardworking and dedication in evacuating them out of the location despite the difficult terrains of the area.
As criminals are now devising new strategies for carrying out nefarious activities, community members must as a matter of urgency collaborate with security forces especially in areas of intelligence gatherings and information sharing by reporting of unusual activities by misguided elements around their localities.
Through these collective efforts, the security challenges bedevilling the country will surely be surmounted within a very near future.
Mukhtar is a Staff Writer with the Emergency Digest