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Posts tagged ‘JTF’

Boko Haram terrorists sets town ablaze, kills 74.


House-Baga-mayhem

About 74 people have been killed by the dreaded Boko Haram Islamic sect in two separate attacks in Borno and Adamawa states. Kawuri town in Konduga Local Government Area of Borno State was razed completely when the terrorists attacked the town on Sunday, leading to the death of 51 people and a soldier.

At the end of the carnage, more than 300 houses and shops were razed, while scores of policemen and civilians were also injured. Kawuri is one of the big towns in Konduga, situated along Maiduguri-Bama Expressway and about 60 kilometres from Maiduguri, the state capital.

About 50 heavily armed terrorists were said to have invaded the town on the market day around 5p.m. and unleashed mayhem on residents and traders. Those injured in the attack are now receiving treatment at Konduga General Hospital and the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital. Our correspondent learnt that no

house was left standing after the attack. The gunmen planted explosive devices around the town, prior to the attack, according to witnesses and security officials.

Civilians were also killed in their homes, before the houses were set ablaze. “No house was left standing,” Ari Kolomi, who fled from the village to Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, said. “The gunmen were more than 50 and they were using explosives and heavysounding guns,” he added. Kolomi said he did not yet know if his relatives had survived the attack.

A senior security operative, who did not want his name mentioned, confirmed the incident to our correspondent yesterday. This is the second attack on the town. The first attack occurred in October last year when some Boko Haram suspects clashed with vigilance youth, popularly known as civilian JTF, leading to the killing of 10 people, including three youths.

Also, during that attack, 18 persons were injured, while 48 shops and 200 houses were razed. Governor Kashim Shettima, who was billed to visit the town yesterday, had to suspend the trip, following intelligence report that the place was not safe.

The terrorists were alleged to have planted Improvised Explosive Devices, IEDs, targeting rescue workers and security operatives deployed to maintain law and order in the area. A survivor, Mallam Mustapha Modu, said he counted about 47 dead bodies yesterday morning, while several others sustained gunshots and injuries.

It will be recalled that in the past week, 37 communities, including Kwaljiri, Kaya, Ngawo Fate, Limanti, Njaba, Yahuri, Mude, Wala and Alau among others in Damboa, Konduga and Gwoza Council areas, had been sacked by terrorists.

The displaced residents of those communities are now taking refuge in some neighbouring villages and Maiduguri as well as across the border in Cameroon. The state Police Commissioner, Mr. Lawal Tanko, confirmed the incident to our correspondent. He said over 40 people were killed while 25 sustained gunshots and injuries, after setting the whole town ablaze.

Tanko said: “I received an intelligence information that Kawuri town was attacked by Boko Haram sect suspected to be on a revenge mission on market day (Sunday), where many civilians were killed while several others were left with serious wounds before they set the whole place on fire, we have deployed our men to the area.”

Tanko, however, said that no policeman was killed during the attack. In Waga Chakawa village, in Madagali Local Government Area of Adamawa State, 22 died in an attack on a church service also on Sunday. Our correspondent learnt that the attackers set off bombs and fired into the congregation, killing 22 people, before burning houses and taking residents hostage during a fourhour siege.

It was learnt that two policemen were among the 22 victims of the attack. Some residents of the village, who fled the area told newsmen that they were attacked by gunmen suspected to be Boko Haram members during Sunday service.

“They used explosives during the attack on worshippers and many people lost their lives”, villagers said “I cannot actually say how many people were killed but I learnt that there are about 16 people evacuated from the church,” one of the residents who identified himself as Apogu said.

Another resident claimed that some houses were also attacked by the gunmen who took some men as hostage, while two policemen, an inspector and a sergeant who were on guard in the church were killed instantly. “I saw some people crying saying that their relations had been taken away as hostages by the gunmen,” the resident who did not want his name mentioned said.

Source: Radio Biafra.

JTF Smashes Militants’ Camp In Bakassi, Shuts Illegal Refineries, Seizes 4 Vessels.


Boko haram fighter 3

The Joint Task Force (JTF) in the Niger Delta, codenamed Operation Pulo Shield, said its operatives have dismantled a militant camp in Bakassi local government area of Cross River State. The force disclosed that its operatives destroyed 59 illegal refineries, arrested seven suspects, and 4 barges in its offensive against oil thieves.

These disclosures were contained in a statement released Sunday in Yenogoa, the Bayelsa State capital, by the JTF’s media coordinator, Lieutenant-Colonel Onyema Nwachukwu. The statement added that several rounds of ammunition were also recovered from the camp.

 

“During the clamp down, the troops recovered 24 x 7.62mm round cartons, 5 Browning machine gun ammunitions, 3 x 7.62 mm round special and 7 live cartridges. Other items recovered from the camp include 4 machine gun belts and one passport fiber boat belonging to Inland Water Ways Agency,” the JTF stated.

According to Colonel Nwachukwu, the captured camp was known in the local area as “Efut Esighi.” He said the camp served as an operational base from which pirates and militants attacked their victims.

The spokesman said JTF operatives also destroyed three illegal crude oil distillation camps concealed in a forest at Agbede and Egwua, in Esako West and Warri South West local government areas of Edo and Delta States respectively. Also reportedly confiscated were items used for the militants’ illicit acts, including seven steel surface tanks, seven locally fabricated ovens used for heating up stolen crude oil, 235 metal drums and four dug-out pits containing stolen crude oil.

The JTF added that its agents shut down shut down 56 illegal crude oil distillation camps in operations carried out in Bayelsa and Rivers States. According to its spokesman, JTF troops destroyed 16 “Cotonou” boats, 22 pumping machines, one power generator, 25 zinc plates used for fabricating local crude oil distillers, one welding machine, and 32 sawed pipes used by oil thieves. The troops also impounded four metal barges and a speed boat caught engaging in illegal oil bunkering activities during the operations which took place from November 11 to 22, 2013.

Colonel Nwachukwu further stated that seven suspects were arrested for oil theft-related offences. He revealed that the suspects were undergoing preliminary investigations before they would be handed over to prosecuting agencies.

Source: Radio Biafra.

JTF Smashes Militants’ Camp In Bakassi, Shuts Illegal Refineries, Seizes 4 Vessels.


 

By SaharaReporters, New York

The Joint Task Force (JTF) in the Niger Delta, codenamed Operation Pulo Shield, said its operatives have dismantled a militant camp in Bakassi local government area of Cross River State. The force disclosed that its operatives destroyed 59 illegal refineries, arrested seven suspects, and 4 barges in its offensive against oil thieves.

These disclosures were contained in a statement released Sunday in Yenogoa, the Bayelsa State capital, by the JTF’s media coordinator, Lieutenant-Colonel Onyema Nwachukwu. The statement added that several rounds of ammunition were also recovered from the camp.

“During the clamp down, the troops recovered 24 x 7.62mm round cartons, 5 Browning machine gun ammunitions, 3 x 7.62 mm round special and 7 live cartridges. Other items recovered from the camp include 4 machine gun belts and one passport fiber boat belonging to Inland Water Ways Agency,” the JTF stated.

According to Colonel Nwachukwu, the captured camp was known in the local area as “Efut Esighi.” He said the camp served as an operational base from which pirates and militants attacked their victims.

The spokesman said JTF operatives also destroyed three illegal crude oil distillation camps concealed in a forest at Agbede and Egwua, in Esako West and Warri South West local government areas of Edo and Delta States respectively. Also reportedly confiscated were items used for the militants’ illicit acts, including seven steel surface tanks, seven locally fabricated ovens used for heating up stolen crude oil, 235 metal drums and four dug-out pits containing stolen crude oil.

The JTF added that its agents shut down shut down 56 illegal crude oil distillation camps in operations carried out in Bayelsa and Rivers States. According to its spokesman, JTF troops destroyed 16 “Cotonou” boats, 22 pumping machines, one power generator, 25 zinc plates used for fabricating local crude oil distillers, one welding machine, and 32 sawed pipes used by oil thieves. The troops also impounded four metal barges and a speed boat caught engaging in illegal oil bunkering activities during the operations which took place from November 11 to 22, 2013.

Colonel Nwachukwu further stated that seven suspects were arrested for oil theft-related offences. He revealed that the suspects were undergoing preliminary investigations before they would be handed over to prosecuting agencies.

We’ll deal with MEND –JTF.


mend

There is no end in sight to the war of words between the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) and the Joint Task Force (JTF) Operation Pulo Shield as the latter has vowed to clamp down on the former over its activities in the Niger Delta region.
Reacting to the claims by MEND that it was behind the killing of soldiers in a community between Rivers and Bayelsa states and the hijack of a vessel and kidnapping of two American sailors. JTF described those behind MEND as drowning gangsters feeding Nigerians with fabricated stories.
The media coordinator of JTF, Lt. Col Onyeama Nwachukwu while reacting to the pronouncement maintained that MEND did not cause the fire incident at the Warri Refinery and argued that the soldiers killed in Andoni Local Government Area of Rivers were not killed by MEND soldiers.
Nwachukwu stated that the JTF would soon descend on MEND just like it has been able to smoke out other criminals causing instability in the region in the recent past.
His statement read in part: “These claims are a reflection of the grandiose illusion of drowning gangsters.
“It is no longer news that their insatiable and desperate desire to conjure up a seeming apocalypse in order to make the world see the Niger Delta as insecure has again failed, as they have continuously fed the public with lies of a grossly failed ‘Hurricane Exodus.’
“The NNPC Warri refinery fire incident, which the NNPC have clearly stated was accidental and occurred when their engineers were working in the top unit of the refinery, is a crystal clear example of the false claims of these criminals.
Our troops in the Andoni incident defended the civilians they escorted gallantly by ensuring their safety. How come the so called MEND did not claim responsibility before now as they would have usually done?
It is simply because they had no knowledge of it until we made it public and ridiculously they have jumped at it for self glorification.
“This claim is therefore an afterthought. The Merchant vessel named Retriever hijacked off the coast by unknown pirates was not at all escorted. It is a Merchant vessel, which had no escort and no JTF presence, how then could JTF have suffered casualty in that incident?”he asked.

Source: Radio Biafra.

MEND leader John Togo for burial 2 years after death.


John-togo

The Defence Headquarters has given the go-ahead for the burial of a notorious sea piracy kingpin and leader of the Niger Delta Liberation Force (NDLF), John Togo, over two years after he was killed in a clash with troops of the Joint Task Force (JTF) in Bomadi Local Government Area of Delta State.

The Nation reliably gathered that the JTF has received the approval to release the body of the crime lord to relevant authority for burial.

Sources said the delay in burying the scar-face militant, who was a factional leader of the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND), was due to the Federal Government’s directives that a DNA test be carried out on his decomposing remains.

 

Togo was killed in an aerial assault by the Airforce arm of the JTF in May 2011 after a five-month stand-off between his ragtag army and troops of the JTF.

He died after he renounced the Amnesty Programme of the Federal Government in November 2010, took up arms and went back to the trenches with a handful of his fellow NDLF members.

He triggered a furious manhunt when he ambushed and killed about six soldiers of a JTF team near Ayakoromo in November 2010; the incident led to the invasion of the community and burning down of about 50 houses in the Ijaw community.

Thereafter, the JTF intensified manhunt for him and his boys, who were encamped at the ‘Israel Camp’ of the group in an isolated boundary area between Bayelsa and Delta states.

He was killed after months of bloody clashes and his gang members buried his remains in a shallow grave before fleeing the scene.

His body was later exhumed when the JTF sent in ground troops, who arrested one of the fleeing militants who led them to his burial site.

The remains could not be buried due to the military’s insistence that a DNA must be conducted to properly identify his body before the manhunt launched for him would be officially called off.

The DNA test, which confirmed the remains as that of Togo, was carried out leading to the recent approval given for his burial.

A top official of the JTF in Effurun Barracks, Capt. Mohammed Abdulahi, was contacted by our reporter, confirmed the report.

He said: “It is true that approval has been given for the burial of Togo, but it is not the task of the JTF to bury him, the body will be released to the Police.”

A source at the JTF’s headquarters, Yenagoa said the approval came last Wednesday.

Source: Radio Biafra.

Oil Spill From Shell: JTF And Suspicious Paradigm Shift? By Ifeanyi Izeze.


By Ifeanyi Izeze

In this country the line between patriotic intentions and outright mischief or rather criminality is so thin it could be assumed not to even exist at all. And so the announcement by the Joint Military Taskforce (JTF) in Rivers state that it discovered an oil spill in Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) facility at Bonny in Rivers State would have been okayed if not that it smacked outright breach in reportorial protocol for such incidents in the nation’s oil sector thereby making the motive suspicious.

Lt. Col. Onyema Nwachukwu, JTF spokesman had in a press statement disclosed that the task force discovered the oil spill during its anti -oil theft raid. Then the comments that followed actually gave out the JTF’s intention as not purely patriotic but rather sinister.

Nwachukwu was quoted as saying that “the JTF discovered that the spill was caused by corrosion noticed along SPDC’s pipeline at Cawthorne Channel 2 area.

“The patrol team reported a leakage close to a signpost marked KP-67 located around Pulokiri/Money Ground between Adamakiri and Creek 6 general area.

“An assessment of the spot revealed that a brownish liquid substance was observed jetting out from an opening on the pipeline.

“The Commanding Officer, 146 Battalion Lt Col Lander Saraso attributed the leakage to corrosion on the pipeline and urged Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) authorities in charge of the Cawthorne Channel 2 to carry out a timely evaluation of the leaking point and effect immediate repairs on the line to prevent further spill.”

It was gathered that officials of Shell remained negligent of the incident despite receiving an official report from the security forces.

According to the report, “SPDC management feigned ignorance and said that only an investigation would identify the cause of the spill. The Oil firm jettisoned the report before it was yet to make any moves to invite the relevant stakeholders to evaluate the incident as they feigned ignorance of the questionable integrity of the company’s pipelines which were said to have corroded in the oil spill location.”

As said, “It was learnt that the Management of SPDC had ignored the report and the observation made by the JTF and was yet to convene a Joint Investigation Visit with Host communities, Oil Spill Agency amongst other relevant government agencies.”

Clearly, the emphasis in the above paragraph was on a suggested “Joint Investigation Visit with Host Communities.”

In as much as we of the south south stock would not tolerate any form of misdeed by the IOCs in the Niger Delta, there are matters of serious concern that need to be address in this action of the JTF which conforms with the series of allegations that the military is complicit in the spate of crude oil theft and pipeline vandalisation across the Niger Delta.

Was it the business of the JTF to issue Press Statements on oil spillage? Above all, was it not suspicious that the JTF statement had already concluded that the cause of the oil spill was corrosion on Shell’s dilapidated pipeline in the Bonny River. Haba Mallam!

How come the JTF chose to report the observed oil spill directly to Shell as alleged rather than to the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) or the Rivers State Environmental Pollution Bureau or even the Federal Ministry of Environment whose mandate it is to handle such matters in the oil industry. This is outrightly suspicious. Shell is not a Nigerian government Office or an agency of the federal government and if our military starts dealing directly with foreigners on issues that does not border much on security and territorial integrity of the nation, then there is something terribly wrong.

The JTF should not allow itself to be used either by “itself’ or any interest group to achieve unwholesome motives as this would definitely backfire in the long run. The military which is characterized by integrity and discipline seems to have been fully drawn into the dirty politics and business between oil companies on one side, and host communities and pipeline contractors and crude oil thieves on the other and this is clear from the reportage of this incident and the ascribed comments to the military task force in Rivers state.

If the JTF could be this efficient in discovering, passing and announcing unwholesome incidents in the oil facilities across the Niger Delta, the embarrassing spate of crude oil theft and illegal bunkering and refining would have been completely wiped out or at least reduced to inconsequential magnitude.

It is regrettable that my people are perishing for lack of knowledge of the long term effects of the activities of oil thieves and pipeline vandals on the Niger Delta environment- water and soil. Is it not stupid that we keep bursting or allowing strangers burst oil pipelines and destroy abandoned wellheads to tap crude and spill oil into our own environment? We then turn to blame Shell and other international oil companies operating the fleets of NNPC joint ventures. Flying over the swamps of the Niger delta, one is shocked at the extent of damage these criminals have caused to the environment- creeks/swamps/ravines and even farmlands. How do you want Shell to rush to control spill you willingly caused? After stealing oil and making money, these criminals abandon the environment and relocate to Port Harcourt and Abuja to enjoy their loot.

As said by somebody who should actually know, the crime of bursting oil pipelines and stealing crude oil is being perpetuated by regular everyday people; most of whom can be linked to the militancy of the past. The same people who sustained the unrestricted flow of weapons (all types) to the Niger Delta militants are the same people sustaining the oil theft. In the past, weapons were exchanged for crude, but the situation is different today. It is all about trading in illegal crude oil. The operating environment is now different in the sense that the security Agencies are no longer hostile but partners. Expectedly, the Nigerian Security Agencies, as a part of the larger system need urgent new focus if we are to arrest the spate of oil theft and pipeline vandalisation.

The Armed Forces, Police, SSS, Customs, Immigration, and all other security Agencies are controlled by the government. If these Agencies failed to check the magnitude of oil theft we are experiencing then something is fundamentally wrong. The displayed inability of our entire security outfits to stem the level of oil theft and puncturing of pipelines is suggestive that our entire territorial integrity is far from secured.

There could not have been oil theft in the magnitude we are experiencing if the security Agencies were alive to their duties and rather than wake up their ideas to tackle the menace, the JTF has turned itself into another arm of the National Oil Spill Response Agency. This is has to be redressed as it is counter-productive. This is the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

IFEANYI IZEZE is an Abuja-based Consultant and can be reached on: iizeze@yahoo.com; 234-8033043009)

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of SaharaReporters 

JTF Reports Oil Spill From Royal Dutch Shell’s Dilapidated Pipeline Network In Bonny.


By SaharaReporters, New York

The Joint Task Force in the Niger Delta at the weekend said it discovered an oil spill in Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) facilities at Bonny in Rivers.

It was gathered that officials of Shell remained negligent of the incident despite receiving an official report from the security forces

Lt. Col. Onyema Nwachukwu, JTF spokesman had in a press statement disclosed  that the task force discovered the spill during its anti oil theft raid.

Nwachukwu said that the JTF discovered that the spill was caused by corrosion noticed along SPDC’s pipeline at Cawthorne Channel 2 area.

“The patrol team reported a leakage close to a signpost marked KP-67 located around Pulokiri/Money Ground between Adamakiri and Creek 6 general area.

“An assessment of the spot revealed that a brownish liquid substance was observed jetting out from an opening on the pipe line.

“The Commanding Officer, 146 Battalion Lt Col Lander Saraso attributed the leakage to corrosion on the pipeline and urged Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) authorities in charge of the Cawthorne Channel 2 to carry out a timely evaluation of the leaking point and effect immediate repairs on the line to prevent further spill”, Lt. Col. Nwachukwu said.

It was learnt that the Management of SPDC had ignored the report and the observation made by the JTF and was yet to convene a  Joint Investigation Visit with Host communities, Oil Spill Agency amongst other relevant government agencies.

Reacting to the JTF’s findings on the integrity of SPDC’s pipeline which were said to have to be corroded in the oil spill location, SPDC management feigned ignorance and said that only an investigation would identify the cause of the spill.

The Oil firm jettisoned the report before it was yet to make any moves to invite the relevant stakeholders to evaluate the incident.

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