*As it ends Operation Ruwan Wuta in North East
By Joseph Erunke
ABUJA – THE Nigerian Air Force said Thursday, that it had rounded off its special operation, tagged:”Operation Ruwan Weta but not without destroying more structures of the Boko Haram terrorists.
The operation was essentially an intensive day and night aerial bombardment of locations where Boko Haram terrorists were attempting to recolonize in the North East.
The Air Force, in a statement by its Director of Public Relations and Information, Air Commodore Olatukunbo Adesanya, said “on 16 September 2017, the concluding day of Operation Ruwan Wuta, the NAF successfully attacked some structures in Kote (near Bama), where Boko Haram terrorists were suspected to be holding a meeting.”
“Kote was a BHT infested location, hosting significant Boko Haram terrorists activities, as revealed by NAF Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) platforms.
“Air interdiction was conducted on the BHT structures in Kote with NAF Alpha Jet and the F-7Ni aircraft, which took turns to attack the enemy location with bombs.
‘Subsequent Battle Damage Assessment (BDA) revealed that the targeted structures were destroyed, “the statement said.
“It is recalled that the objective of Operation Ruwan Wuta was to ‘rain significant fire’ on Boko Haram terrorists hideouts thereby further degrading the ability of the terrorists to freely operate and consequently giving advantage to friendly surface forces to gain momentum.
“Accordingly, enemy locations, which were successfully attacked, with significant damage on the BHTs, include Parisu, Njimia, Zanari, Garin Maloma, Yale Market, Mungusum, Arra and Kote.
“A comprehensive BDA over the attacked locations after the 10-day operation revealed the complete absence of Boko Haram terrorists activities.
“To successfully execute the Operation, the NAF conducted a total of 129 missions in 180 sorties within a total of over 208 flying hours, “it further said.
It revealed that” an integral part of the Operation, which lasted from 7 – 16 September 2017, was a medical outreach programme that was targeted at providing free medical treatment to Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in camps near Maiduguri, the Sambisa general area and Rann, in particular.”
The statement read further:”The NAF also conducted free surgeries for IDPs that needed surgical interventions, airlifting them to the NAF Medical Centre in Maiduguri where necessary.
“In all, 700 IDPs in Rann alone received free medical treatment while free surgical interventions were carried out on 146 IDPs out of a total of 1,032 that were screened in all the beneficiary IDP camps.
“As at 20 September 2017, the free surgical interventions included 90 eye surgeries and 56 general surgeries while 60 other IDPs received free medicated eyeglasses from the NAF. The surgical interventions on the IDPs are still ongoing and would come to an end on 21 September 2017.”