Defence & SecurityNews

Tension mounts in S/south as troops intercept explosives in Cross River

By Paul Michael, Abuja

Citizens in the Niger Delta region are currently living in fear following the interception of a vehicle ladened with assorted explosives in Cross River State.

It was gathered that the driver of the vehicle, a Toyota Camry, tried to evade troops at their checkpoint in Forward Operating Base Amana when the army opened fire on the tyres of the vehicle.

According to a statement by the Director of Army Public Relations, Brig-Gen Onyema Nwachukwu, on Wednesday, the Camry was heading towards Obudu Mountains from Utanga village in the State.

Nwachukwu said a total of 72 Improvised Explosive Device chargers, 121 Dynamite Liquid, 200 rounds of 7.62 mm (NATO), and 82 rounds of 7.62 mm (Special) ammunition as well as military uniforms and kits were found in the vehicle during a search.

“Troops of 13 Brigade operating under command of 82 Division, Nigerian Army on Tuesday 21 June 2022, intercepted a Toyota Camry car with registration number JAL 492 AA, ladened with assorted ammunition while enroute Utanga village towards Obudu Mountains in Cross River State.

“Troops deployed at Forward Operating Base Amana attempted to stop the vehicle at their checkpoint but the driver evaded the checking and zoomed off. The driver’s recalcitrance compelled the troops to open fire on the tyres of the vehicle, thereby immobilizing it.

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“A thorough search conducted on the vehicle revealed it was conveying 72 Improvised Explosive Device chargers, 121 Dynamite Liquid, 200 rounds of 7.62 mm (NATO), and 82 rounds of 7.62 mm (Special) ammunition. Other items recovered in the intercepted vehicle are military uniforms and kits,” he stated.

He urged members of the public to continue to support the troops with credible information that could lead to stemming the tide of insecurity across the country.

Meanwhile, the development has increased tension in the South-south region, which has been enjoying relative peace for a while now.

A source in the region said citizens were apprehensive over the discovery of the explosives. Adding that those residing in the region are concerned because they would not want issues of bomb explosions in South-South.

“Our people are already scared. Just imagine the havoc that can be caused by those explosives and you would understand the reason for the fear. While we commend the Army for a job well done, I want to call on security operatives to be very sensitive and alert in the region.

“We cannot afford to have cases of bomb explosion in the Niger Delta region, so governments must do what is necessary to avoid infiltration of criminal elements and terrorists in the region. I want to also call on our people to quickly report strange and suspicious movements and objects to security operatives,” he said.

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