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By Ibrahim-Gwamna Mshelizza

The recently appointed Commander of the 3 Division Special Operation Battalion, Damaturu, Colonel Aliyu Abdullahi has said that his command will not relent in its effort to rid the state of insurgency activities.

Speaking to newsmen in Damaturu, Colonel Abdullahi said that there has been an appreciable progress in the fight against insurgency in the state. He added that men of the unit would continue to carry out operations to sustain the relative peace so far achieved.

He said the return of peace is evident in the massive return of people back to the major towns and villages across the state and the resumption of commercial activities.

Asked if the command lost an armoured tank to insurgents, Colonel Abdullahi dismissed such as an unfounded and baseless rumour. "My command never lost any tank to insurgents. Also, flanking formations never recorded such a loss. These are runours which may even come from the insurgents" he said.

Speaking further, the commander explained that the current operation is information and intelligence driven. "We have therefore stepped up our intelligence acquisition efforts. This requires greater collaboration and cooperation with the people on the one hand and synergy with other security agencies on the other hand".

He stated that they have enjoyed support and cooperation from the people. He further appealed to the people to sustain the support by providing credible and timely information to security agencies to defeat the insurgents.

Colonel Aliyu Abdullahi told newsmen that troops will continue to conduct counter terrorism and counter insurgency operations within and without its area of responsibility in order to dominate it. Both air and ground operations are being conducted and a lot of successes have been achieved to defeat terrorism and insurgency in the north eastern part of the country.

Based on credible and timely intelligence, several suspected Boko Haram terrorists have been arrested and they are also giving useful information to security agencies. While the 3 Division Special Operation Battalion continues to conduct its operation, the unit is also very careful to avoid collateral damage.

This is very critical to us as we strive to win the hearts and minds of the civil populace.

The commander advised law abiding citizens to go about their lawful activities as security agencies would continue to work to ensure the security of their lives and property.

Colonel Aliyu Abdullahii thanked the Chief of Staff, Lt. Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika and the Yobe state government for supporting the troops to carry out their operations.