Army arrest 20 notorious criminals in Kogi, recover arms, ammunition 

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By Ameer  Obansa, Lokoja
Military Authority on Saturday said no fewer twenty 20 notorious criminals have been  arrested, which included Mr Eleme Salihu, the kidnap kingpin at Itobe in Ofu LGA of the State of Kogi .
Addressing journalists in Lokoja, at the Command Army Records, Chari Maigumeri Barrack Lokoja, the Acting Director, Defence Information, Brigadier  John Agim noted that  the Clearance Operation has significantly achieved the set objectives for which Operation 777 was set up.
According to him, the he troops also foiled several kidnapping attempts and intensified continuous confidence building through patrols, show of force, blocking operations, as well as cordon and search.
The Army also  reiterated its commitment to protecting  lives and property of the citizenry saying that the  launched  of Operation 777   in Kogi state has reduced  incidence of kidnappings  , armed robberies and other violent crimes in the  State.
The Defence spokesman noted that the military in its response to the rising waves of violent crimes ravaging the state had in october 2018  inaugurated  a clearance operation code name ( JOA 777) to deal with the threats of insecurity,  saying the operation has reduced to the  barest minimum,  crimes and criminality across the state.
He added that the launch of the Operation became imperative because of the strategic location of the state which share  borders with nine states and the FCT making it susceptible to criminals from the adjoining  states.
The Army boss said  asides its strategic location, the state houses the Geregu power plants, Dangote Cement Company and two major bridges across Niger at jamata and Itobe , saying his men  are at alert to protect these  critical national Assets while  also providing security for   high profile persons plying the state.
He said his men were able to arrest one  notorious kidnapping kingpin even as  cache of arms and ammunitions  were recovered from the criminals across the state.
According to him. “with timely intervention of the members of the operations, two expatriates working with a construction company in Okene who were recently  abducted  were promptly  rescued, advising citizenry  to respect security measures put in place by  the Security Agencies to avoid falling into the hands of the criminals.
Agim lamented that prior to the formation of the clearance operation in the state, kogi has suffered serious lose of lives and destruction of property by the hoodlums , he  however assured  the public that the situation has been brought under control.
He noted that  three battalions and three brigades were established , one for the Central, East and west  senatorial zones of the state  to cordinate eight operational  sectors within the ambit of the operation 777   saying that the arrangement has made the operation more mobile to respond swiftly to nib the activities of the hoodlums.
While commending the press for the synergy with the security services that has enhanced their Efficiency, he  urged them not to relent in giving useful and timely information about the activities of the men of the underworld to create a safer society.
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