NIGERIAN ARMY LAUNCHES “EGWU EKE 111” AHEAD OF 2019 POLLS.
soldiers of 182 division on routine work out in ENUGU
As part of efforts to ensure hitch-free poll in 2019, the Nigerian Army has launched a special military operation tagged ‘Operation Egwu Eke III’ to checkmate all forms of violence before, during and after the 2019 elections.
Speaking at the launch held at the Military Control and Command Centre, Headquarter of Operation Lafiya Dole in Maiduguri on Friday, the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, said the military operation will be conducted across the country.
Buratai, who was represented by the Army’s Chief of Training and Operations, Maj. Gen. Lamidi Adeosun, said as the 2019 general elections gathers momentum, an upsurge of security challenges such as stockpiling of arms by criminal groups, formation of ethnic militias and violence induced by political activities were noticed.
“The Nigerian Army will continue to conduct internal security operations in combating criminality and other security challenges in the country, in line with its constitutional mandate of military aid to civilian authority.
“These challenges coupled with other security threats across the country such as terrorism, militancy, kidnapping and banditry portend that dissident groups and criminal elements could cash in on the situation to perpetrate large scale violence before, during and after the 2019 general elections,” he said.
The Army chief recalled that the Army decided to reintroduce the ‘Operation Egwu Eke’ which is an Igbo phrase meaning ‘Python Dance’ previously conducted in 2016 and 2017 respectively in the southeast region of the country.
He said the positive result it yielded in checkmating the security challenges being witnessed in the region necessitated the new operation.
“The successes recorded so far in all conducted Nigerian Army level exercises is in fulfilling both training and operations objectives of the Nigerian Army. I also believe exercise ‘Egwu Eke III’ with its mandate of combating the upsurge of security challenges as we approach the 2019 general elections will be a success.
“Let me use this opportunity to call on the good people of our great nation Nigeria, to provide our men and women in uniform adequate support especially timely Information to enable them deliver on the mandate of exercise ‘Egwu Eke III’.
“I want to also reaffirm the commitment of the Nigerian Army in the fight against terrorism and insurgency in our country,” Buratai said.