By Ozioruva Aliu
AS part of efforts to checkmate the raging instances of crime and criminalities in Edo state, the Nigerian Army has begun Operation Crocodile Smile VI combing criminal hideouts and arresting suspects, and recovering arms and ammunition.
This is being done in collaboration with the Nigerian Police and other security agencies in the state to help restore sanity after the near lawlessness that has taken over the state since the EndSARS protest turned violent in the state.
The Assistant Director, Army Public Relations, Major Ojo Adenegan told Vanguard on phone yesterday evening that “The clearance operation and other joint operation that is ongoing is a continuation of Exercise Crocodile VI that also signals the synergy between the Nigerian Army and other security agencies in Edo state, it is also a signal of warning to any criminal in the state that Edo state will never be for them.
The state is not a safe haven for any criminal ranging from secret cult members, kidnappers, armed robbers, and drug peddlers and we are using this medium to also inform the public to please avail us with useful information and these criminal hideouts and the operation will continue”
On the raid in Upper Sokponba and other areas in the state, he said “The operation has commenced where several hideouts of kidnappers have been raided and some arrests have been made and this is a signal for every criminal element in Edo state, they should now know that Edo state is not going to be a place for them to operate and commit atrocities; we will continue to carry out this joint operation in order to make Edo state and its environs free form crime and the law-abiding citizens should go about their normal businesses.”
The task force has continued strict enforcement of the state-wide 10 pm to 6 am curfew imposed by the government to check the activities of hoodlums and criminals and they have raided some hotels and clubs in the city violating the curfew to ensure strict compliance.
Adenegan in a statement yesterday released helplines for the ongoing Exercise in Edo state giving the numbers as 08079831567 and 08079839190.
He noted that the helplines are operational 24/7.