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The Hunt For Tompolo

By Usman Mohammed
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Over the skies of Arepo three L39 Albatross Fighter Jets screeched overhead. Armed this time with heavy ordinance this was neither a training or recognises ance sortie. The pilots were tense and focused for Operation Crocodile Smile was a go. The targets had been painted in prior reconnaissance sorties hence the four Militant Camps were earmarked for total destruction via aerial bombardment.

The hunt for Government Tompolo has been ratcheted up a notch with the orders of the Military High Command that the bombardment of the Niger Delta should be sustained until Tompolo is captured dead or alive. The final mission orders were delivered to the pilot cockpit then they let fly their heavy ordinance bombs on the Ijaw Camp 2 of The Niger Delta Militants that had left terror in the hearts of the peaceful town of Arepo.

The earth shuddered and the balls of fire rose high into the sky as Operation Crocodile Smile was truly underway. Amphibious troops began their advance armed to the teeth as they began their flanking manoeuvre to mow down any fleeing Militants while the Navy stood poised as overwatch.

This is the scene in the theatre of War as the Nigerian Military acting on the orders of the Chief of Defence Staff and their Commander in Chief began their offensive, Code named Operation Crocodile Smile, against Niger Delta Militants opening up a second front in the war against terror having decimated Boko Haram incthe North East.

Indeed this offensive was long over due for these miscreants had turned the once peaceful South West into a den of thieves as these marauders and invaders desecreated the land. Oil bunkering became their key trade, intertwined with Kidnapping, extortion, rape and pillage as these invaders terrorised the coastal areas of Lagos and Ogun States.

Over 40 innocent souls were dispatched to the great beyond by these criminals who have finally met their comeuppance as the fighter jets of Nigerian Airforce dropped hot lead on their heads. But this is just one stage of a two pronged assault. Special Units of the DSS have been dispatched to round up the supporters of the man believed to be behind the new crisis in the Niger Delta, the much feared General Government Tompolo.

Indeed the new spate of militancy arose immediately after Government Tompolo was declared a wanted man and his bank accounts put in the cooler as he was implicated in the dastardly looting of Billions of Dollars from the coffers of NIMASA which was run by his stooge.

Low the DSS have a long list of his close aides and concubines hence the hunt for Tompolo has intensified. In a midnight raid of multiple sites across the Niger Delta the night before Operation Crocodile Smile commenced, Simeon Bebenimibo, Bomboy Oluwa and other close associates of Tompolo were rounded up for interrogation with the number one question on everyone's lips being. Where is Tompolo?

Tompolo is indeed a slippery eel and he knows the creeks of the Delta like the back of his hand hence the chances of catching him as he moves from one enclave to another appears pretty slim. But it is not a mere coincidence that as the bombs were falling on the militant camps, Chief Edwin Clark was hosting an emergency meeting of Ijaw Leaders in his sprawling home in Warri. In this meeting was how to marshal out a soft landing for Government Tompolo lest the collateral damage of the war in the Delta consume their kith and kin.

Already MEND has struck a deal with the Government and are currently ironing out modalities for a lasting peace with their colourfully named Aaron Team 2. But the Niger Delta Avengers (NDA) is caught between a rock and a hard place. Some want to join MEND at the Government round table while others want to continue their campaign of economic sabotage for their loyalty to Tompolo is of paramount importance to their cause. A split of the NDA into multiple factions appears inevitable.

As scores of militants and their concubines lie dead on the sands of Arepo the Ijaw leaders are up in arms with the claim that this was overkill and that innocent women and children were killed in the cross fire. This is open for further investigation but the bottom line is any woman who willingly chooses to cavort with a criminal and spawn little Avengers for him should be ready for the consequences of her actions when the long arm of the law fishes them out.

Violence should be the last resort in any conflict of interests, and these Avengers have left the government with no other choice as their plot to cripple the Nigerian State thickens. Congratulations to the Nigerian Military for the successful execution of Operation Crocodile Smile, but they should not rest on their oars until the instigator of this carnage is captured Dead or live. The Hunt for Government Tompolo has just begun.

Usman Mohammed. Mass Communication,
IBB University Lapai-Niger State.
07060815443 (SMS Only)

Disclaimer: "The views/contents expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of Usman Mohammed and do not necessarily reflect those of The Nigerian Voice. The Nigerian Voice will not be responsible or liable for any inaccurate or incorrect statements contained in this article."