Troops of Operation Thunder Strike have recovered 371 livestock including 363 cattle and eight sheep rustled along Abuja-Kaduna highway by rustlers.
They also arrested three suspected cattle rustlers and recovered one AK47 rifle and a motorcycle.
The Deputy Director, Army Public Relations, 1 Division Nigerian Army Headquarters, Kaduna, Colonel Ezindu Idimah, disclosed this on Tuesday during the handing-over of the livestock to Kaduna State Government in Rijanna, Kachia Local Government Area of the state.
He said the joint operation commenced on May 10, 2019 comprising of personnel of the Nigerian Army, Air Force, Police, Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Directorate of State Security (DSS) and National Intelligence Agency (NIA).
He said the main objective of the operation is to contain and clear Abuja-Kaduna highway of cattle rustling, banditry and kidnapping activities.
According to him, “So far, the operation has been able to frustrate the activities of the criminals in the area of operations and has made many arrests and recovery of weapons.
“One of such achievements recorded is the recovery of 116 cattle and arrest of three suspected cattle rustlers and bandits on June 18th during one of our numerous operations where Forces intercepted a cattle rustler who narrowly escaped with gun short wounds.
“Our Forces recovered 247 cattle and eight sheep and recover one AK 47 rifle and a motorcycle which is being handed over to the state government.”
Receiving the livestock on behalf of the state government, the Special Adviser on Security to Kaduna state governor, and Coordinator of Operation Yaki, AIG Murtala Abbas (rtd), commended the troops for their efforts at safeguarding lives and property of the citizenry.
He assured that the yardstick to identify the genuine livestock’s owners would be publicized saying, “Only owners with genuine means of identification, including when and where the livestock was stolen and whether the owner reported the theft of their stolen cattle will be handed over their livestock.”