By Ronald Mutum
The Nigerian Army yesterday said troops of the 4 Brigade in Abia State have arrested one Gabriel Ogbudje (an ex-militant leader) and the alleged leader of the “Otugas Fire Force”, a militant group threatening to attack the Utorogu Gas Plant.
A statement from the army spokesman, Colonel Sani Usman, said Ogbuje was alleged to be responsible for the recent attack on NPDC/Shoreline major delivery trunk line within Ogo-Oteri general area on August 26.
Usman said the militant was trailed and arrested by troops along Agbor-Abraka road in Edo State on Tuesday.
“He had been on the run since he was declared wanted because of his public declaration as the leader of the militant group “Otugas Fire Force” and his subsequent declaration of the threat code named “Crocodile Tears”,” Usman added.
He also said Ogbudie was arrested with his accomplice, Elvis Dweller Ejus and both were handed over to the Operation Delta Safe for further interrogation and subsequent passage to the relevant security agency for prosecution.
He further said troops of the 13 Brigade Nigerian Army in conjunction with Nigerian Navy, Nigeria Air Force and covert operatives of the Defence Intelligence Agency, arrested a suspected kingpin of the Niger Delta Avengers, Isaac Romeo, who goes by the appellation of “G2”. Usman said Romeo was arrested with two other persons, Mr. Lawson Samson and an elderly man, Mr. Iyang Ekpo in Calabar, Cross River State while in a vehicle with registration number, CRS 86 AO1 on Saturday, September 3.
He added that the arrest followed painstaking efforts and tracking of the militant who was in the state to perpetrate further criminal activities of sabotaging critical infrastructure.
He said all the suspects were being interrogated.
In a related development, the Nigerian Army yesterday announced the arrest Tuesday of a Boko Haram suspect, Muhammed Bulama, in Yobe State. He is number 105 on the wanted list.
Army spokesman, Colonel Sani Usman said Bulama was arrested with two other suspected Boko Haram militants, Ardo Abba Muhammed and Muhammadu Kaigama, in Azare community, Gujba Local Government Area of Yobe State.
He said they were arrested riding on horseback and bicycle shepherding some sheep towards a market. He added that during preliminary investigation, Bulama confirmed his photograph on the wanted list and further revealed that he specialized on rearing animals for the Boko Haram group.
Usman said Bulama also confessed that they came to the village to sell the animals as they had run out of cash in their hideout and would also get some food items back for the upcoming Sallah festivity.