The Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, has assured Nigerians that the Nigerian Army is capable and ready to crush all acts of criminality and resistance in the Niger-Delta in order to maintain peace in the country.
He also said that the activities of militants in the creeks of Bakassi and Akpabuyo Local Government Areas of Cross River State would soon come to an end.
Buratai said this in Calabar on Wednesday during the unveiling of the ‘Exercise Crocodile Smile’ at the jetty of the Amphibious Training School in Calabar.
He said the army would ensure that all troublemakers in the region were caged.
The Army Chief, who also unveiled a boat hanger and five gunboats, said the army was ready to monitor criminals’ activities on both land and the creeks.
He said the contribution of the amphibious wing of the army was critical in achieving this.
Buratai said, “We are launching Operation Crocodile Smile in the Niger-Delta because we want to make our presence felt and to ensure that all criminal elements from the region are fished out and dealt with accordingly.”
The Chief of Army Staff, who went on a boat cruise along the Calabar waterways, added, “Our readiness to effectively safeguard the creeks in the Niger-Delta region is not in doubt as our amphibious personnel have been training and retraining to ensure that they fulfil their mandate.”
While promising to strengthen the amphibious unit, Buratai said the military was doing everything within its power to build an impregnable security in the Niger Delta.
The army chief reiterated the readiness of the army to carry out its constitutional role in accordance with international best practices.
He maintained that the military would not allow anyone to threaten the peace of the nation.
Also speaking, Commandant of 13 Brigade, Calabar, Brig. Gen. Bulama Biu, said the brigade was ready to carry out its mandate within the rules of engagement.
Biu commended Buratai for reinvigorating the army and ensuring that provision was made for the training and retraining of personnel.