The Nigerian Army says it is making progress in the Niger Delta as it reveals that the Joint Task Force has killed five militants in Rivers State.
This is coming barely 24 hours after the military announced that it has begun mopping up of arms in the Nigeria’s Niger Delta region.
The militants were killed during an exchange of gun fire with the troops, and a cache of arms and ammunition recovered from them.
The troops intercepted the hoodlums after they had kidnapped an unidentified person before the gun battle ensued.
A statement by the Army spokesman, Colonel Sani Usman, stated that the exercise would continue this weekend in the 82 Division and part of the Two Division of the Nigerian Army.
The army explained that the operations in the riverine environment was to check criminal activities such as kidnapping, militancy and piracy among others.
The Commander of “Operation Delta Safe”, Major General Joseph Irabor, had told journalists in Yenogoa, Bayelsa State that the military would not relent in its determination to rid the Niger Delta of illegal arms.
This latest killing of five militants and one kidnapper occurred in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital this weekend and is considered a major breakthrough by the Nigerian military.
However, there are reports that the Federal Government is ready to dialogue with the Niger Delta militants, to resolve the crisis in the region.
The Petroleum Minister, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, said at the weekend that over $40 billion have been spent in the Niger Delta in the past 12 years without any significant results.