In order to restore sanity, law and order to Edo State which had been under siege by criminal elements, the Edo State Joint Security Taskforce has embarked on raid of criminal hideouts to smoke out kidnappers who had been terrorizing the state, especially in the notorious Upper Sakponba area and coastal communities.
The raid which began at the weekend, Tell learnt, led to the arrest of seven suspected male kidnappers on Saturday around Ogbemudia Oil Palm Plantation.
The operation, which is led by the General Officer Commanding GOC, 2 Division, Major General Omozoje, is also aimed at flushing out other hoodlums like cultists and armed robbers who had almost made the state ungovernable in the past four weeks.
Before embarking on the exercise, Omozoje had briefed the governor, Godwin Obaseki on their activity in the state, and promised to bring to a halt the recent rise in criminality as well as support efforts at capturing escapees from the two federal correctional facilities in Benin City, the state capital.
Omozoje also met with heads of security agencies in the state, where he emphasized the need for synergy among the agencies with a view to restoring peace and order in the state.
Speaking on their operations in the riverine communities and other hotspots, the GOC said: “Troops of the 4 brigade are on clearance operation at suspected kidnappers’ hideouts at Ogbemudia oil palm plantation and the river behind it. We intend to disrupt all kidnapping activities along the axis and secure the Benin-Auchi Expressway.”
Omozoje also disclosed that several escaped prisoners and criminal gang leaders have been arrested, as the taskforce was focused on ensuring a reduction in crime in Benin metropolis and environs.
According to him, he had been in synergy with the Commander, 4 Brigade, Brig. Gen. UM Bello, and the Assistant Inspector General (AIG), Zone 5, Shola Davis.