By Joseph Erunke
ABUJA—THE troops of Exercise Ayem Akpatuma (Cat Race) deployed in Benue State, yesterday, arrested four herdsmen, who were caught grazing on farmland in Yelwata area of the state.
The Nigerian Army, which disclosed this in a statement by the Director of Public Relations, Brigadier General Texas Chukwu, said three herdsmen caught destroying farmland with their cattle, Wednesday, along Buruku-Uba-Abeda-Ameh and Fadama Kuturu were also nabbed by troops.
The statement said a large number of weapons were recovered in different locations of the state, where the exercise is being conducted.
The statement said: “Troops of Sub-Sector A, deployed at Yelwata, while on routine patrol along Gbajimba-Kaseyo-Awe Road in Benue State, arrested four herdsmen grazing in farmland on Wednesday, February 28. Four cutlasses were recovered from the herdsmen.
“Similarly, troops of Sub-Sector B, deployed in Anyilamo, while on fighting patrol along Buruku-Uba-Abeda-Ameh and Fadama Kuturu also in Benue State, apprehended three herdsmen destroying farmland with their cattle on Wednesday.
“In a related development, troops of Army Headquarters Special Force Team B of Command Army Record, Lokoja, while on routine patrol last Tuesday, along Okene-Lokoja Road, responded to a distress call of kidnappers operating along the road.
“On arrival, troops encountered the gangs and engaged them. During the fire fight, the kidnappers abandoned their location and fled into the bush.
“According to information provided to troops, the gangs were said to have kidnapped one Alhaji Momoh on February 18.
“Troops have dominated the area while trailing the kidnappers to rescue the victim.”
“The Nigerian Army, therefore, requested law-abiding citizens not to relent in their effort at providing useful information to assist the Army and other security agencies in the successful conduct of exercise Ayem Akpatuma.”