The Nigerian Army, yesterday in Lagos, flagged off Operation Crocodile Smile IV, with a vow to smoke out kidnappers, pipeline vandals, crude oil thieves and other acts of criminalities both on water and land, in Lagos and Ogun States.

To ensure quick dispensation of justice , It has appealed to the Federal Government to establish special tribunals for arrested suspects.

Speaking with journalists shortly after declaring open the 81 Division of the Nigerian Army Training Day for the exercise, at the Ikeja Cantonment, Lagos, Flag Officer Commanding, FOC Western Naval Command, Rear Admiral Oladele Daji, stated that the exercise would go a long way to addressing the myriad of internal security problems in the South West.

By the way, the training day which was part of activities lined up for the exercise, was a multi-agency affair which had participants drawn from the Military, Police, Para-Military, security agencies among other stakeholders.

The exercise which will commence on November 8 through December 23 and expected to hold simultaneously in 2, 6, 81 and 82 Divisions of the Nigerian Army, according to the FOC, had two basic objectives on Training and operation.

He said, “The conduct of the exercise will feature aspects of civil-military cooperation, media, psychological operations, rules of engagement and the observance of international humanitarian law in the conduct of the joint operations.

“This will assist in carrying out the myriad of internal security responsibilities especially those that concern the protection of lives as well as critical national assets against unwarranted attacks and sabotage.”

Calling on the need for special tribunal to execute quick dispensation of justice, Rear Admiral Daji, said, “We have had cases where we arrested the same set of people two or three times over. Judges are human beings. They have so many cases and we cannot keep a suspect in detention or awaiting trial indefinitely. But when they are granted bail, they return to their criminal ways within that intervening time”.

“It is a problem that needs all stakeholders to address. That is why we are clamouring for special tribunals for quick dispensation of justice. It will go a long way to serve as deterrence to criminally minded people, especially oil thieves.

“Crude oil theft or pipeline vandalism is economic sabotage and poses environmental security issues. As these pipes are broken, hydrocarbons get back into the ground and it takes billion of years to decompose. To make use of that soil for any productive venture, you need to do cleanup which does not come cheap.

“Take what is happening in Ogoni as example. The money being spent to cleanup that area would have been used to develop the communities and make them vibrant economically”.

Earlier in his remark, the Chief of Army Staff, COAS Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai, explained that the exercise which would be conducted with the support of sister services and relevant security agencies , would include civil –Military relations activities such as medical and educational outreaches.

The exercise, according to the COAS who was represented by the General Officer Commanding, GOC 81 Division of the Nigerian Army, Major General Olu Irefin, would be conducted across the South-West regions of Lagos and Ogun States, hinting that it was aimed among other objectives to improve the operational capacity of troops and other security agencies involved in the exercise , as well as enhance synergy in tackling the security challenges.

He said: “ This training day with the theme “ Inter-agency Cooperation: Imperative for Efficient Joint Operations’ , is therefore apt towards achieving the set goal”.


StatePress is an online newspaper with wide and extensive coverage of socio political events in the Nigerian States, African Continent and beyond.  We break the news, focus on issues without bias and maintain highest level of professionalism in discharging our social responsibility.

Post A Comment: