Nigeria

DHQ assures adequate security in Benue, Taraba, Nasarawa

TO GO WITH AFP STORY BY MIKE SMITH Joint Military Task Force (JTF) spokesman Lt.Col. Onyema Nwachukwu speaks on illegal oil refineries and miltary operations to dislodge oil thieves in Bayelsa State of Niger Delta on April 9, 2013. Shell Development Company of Nigeria (SPDC) had threatened to shut down production in April for nine days in the entire Nembe Trunk Line to remove a number of bunkering points on pipelines vandalised by oil thieves in the region. Since 2009, SPDC has experienced an upsurge in vandalisation of pipeline network by criminals causing severe environmental devastation and forcing the company to lose 60,000 barrels daily this year. AFP PHOTO/PIUS UTOMI EKPEI (Photo credit should read PIUS UTOMI EKPEI/AFP/Getty Images)

The Defence Headquarters (DHQ) on Saturday assured residents of Benue, Taraba and Nasarawa States of adequate security with its ongoing Operation Whirl Stroke.

The Acting Director of Defence Information, Brig.-Gen. Onyema Nwachukwu, disclosed this in a statement in Abuja.

The DHQ backed Joint operations is code-named “Operation Whirl Stroke (OPWS).”

Nwachukwu said the non-kinetic approach of OPWS had been a potent and effective antidote to the conflicts in the Joint Operations Area.

He allayed public anxiety on the drawdown of the operation, adding that it was imperative for OPWS to wind down having achieved its operational mandate.

The Force Commander of the DHQ coordinated Joint operations, Maj.-Gen. Mutiu Yekini, urged the residents of the states to go about their legitimate businesses without fear of molestation.

Yekini said the reassurance was to douse the fear in the states of likely influx of herdsmen migrating southward and their attendant violence when seeking greener pastures in the dry season.

He said: “The peace and tranquility presently enjoyed in the states, which were previously ravaged by ethnoreligious conflicts, herders/farmers clashes, banditry, kidnapping, cultism, and tribal militias will be sustained.”

According to him, the wanton killings orchestrated by herdsmen/farmers clashes have been brought under firm control.

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