Defence Headquarters, DHQ, Abuja, said the armed forces cannot be intimidated by the activities of militants in the Niger-Delta region.
The military high command warned that its troops will crush anybody or group hiding under the guise of regional agitation to commit all manners of crimes and atrocities.
Acting Director, Defence Information, Brig-Gen, Rabe Abubakar, gave the warning in a statement yesterday, stressing that DHQ is disturbed on how various militant groups are springing up in the region.
General Abubakar said it is more worrisome that despite the solutions to the lingering Niger-Delta problem, some groups are still fanning the embers of war.
“The military and other security agencies will remain focused, un-intimidated and will display professionalism in ensuring adequate security to lives and property. While the armed forces respect government’s negotiation with relevant stakeholders in the Niger-Delta, military exercise and operations in the area are not targeted at any group ry exercise and operations in the area are not targeted at any group or meant towards making lives difficult for inhabitants.’’
The military spokesman assured that the ongoing exercise is geared towards enhancing civil-military relationship and building the confidence of residents on the ability of the military to protect them.
“The exercise also demonstrates the strength of troops to purge the region of criminals and economic saboteurs. The armed forces would not tolerate any form of criminality in that region. The military and other security agencies wish to re-affirm their total commitment to ensuring the security of lives and property, not only in the Niger-Delta, but throughout the federation.
“We also solicit for the cooperation of all stakeholders including royal fathers, leaders and youths to achieve this feat. We urge the public, especially those residing in the Niger-Delta, to discountenance the threat and request innocent citizens and those domiciled therein to go about their legitimate businesses.’’
The statement also said the latest militant group being the Niger Delta Greenland Justice Mandate, NDGJM, that claimed responsibility for blowing up NNPC oil pipelines a few days ago has come out again, demanding residents living near ago and gas infrastructure to vacate their homes to avoid being caught in its next attacks.
“The Defence Headquarters wishes to state, in clear terms, that no group or individual has the right to threaten or force residents in any part of Nigeria to abandon their homes in obeisance to certain selfish and devilish interest”, General Abubakar warned.


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