The Nigeria Army plans to conduct military exercises in Southern Kaduna, Plateau and Kano States – tagged Operation Kunama (Scorpion) – as part of measures to contain the onslaught of Fulani marauders against farmers in the region.
The Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai, disclosed this yesterday to State House correspondents after President Muhammadu Buhari convened the first national security meeting of 2017.
It was attended by the Chief of Defence Staff and service chiefs of the Army, Air Force and Navy; the Inspector-General of Police; Director-General of the Department of State Services (DSS); the Minister of Defence, and the Director-General of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA).
Buratai disclosed that the Army’s ‘Operation Python Dance’ in the South East zone, which has been criticised by many in the region, would be renamed.
The southern part of Kaduna State has been enmeshed in murderous carnage in recent weeks, with the herdsmen leaving behind scores of dead villagers and residences destroyed.
The consequent uproar made the President to order a military intervention and deployment of two Army battalions to help restore normalcy there.
In line with this, Buratai announced after yesterday’s security meeting that military operations would even extend beyond Kaduna to the neighbouring Plateau and Kano States which had also witnessed similar challenges in the past and could flare up at any time.
He said the President’s directives concerning the Southern Kaduna operations remain in force and that troops will continue to carry out their patrols there.