From: Uche Uche, Damaturu
Nigerian soldiers in Yobe state yesterday sealed off the central motor park in Damaturu, the state capital, popularly called Bayan Tasha market and arrested some people suspected to be members of Boko Haram.
Some eyewitnesses who were caught up inside the park told Peoples Daily state correspondent that the operation started at about 7: 30 am and lasted till about 11am and that about six people were arrested including a driver and a long time known seller of scents in the park.
When our correspondent contacted the army public relation officer in Damaturu, Lt. N. Irabor, he confirmed the operation and stated that it was a normal military cordon and search operation aimed at fishing out criminals including members of Boko Haram who may be hiding in the area, pointing out that the operation becomes more necessary now that the insurgents are running away to escape the superior power on the Nigerian army in the area.
He could not however confirm the number of arrest immediately nor give more details but added that the military must have acted on received intelligent information.
Peoples Daily recalled that in a recent press release made available to newsmen in Yobe state, the Deputy director army public relations, Theatre Command Operation Lafiya Dole, Colonel ADO ISA, stated that, “following credible information that some of the fleeing criminals, suspected erstwhile Boko Haram/ISWAP criminal elements are hibernating in some towns and villages of Borno and Yobe States in particular and North East in general.
Thus the command also initiated and commenced an operation nicknamed “Operation Positive Identification”.
Consequently, members of the public were enjoined to always carry valid means of identification when moving or passing through the states of Adamawa, Borno and Yobe as the troops, according to Colonel Ado Isa, have been instructed to strictly check valid means of identification such as National Identification Card, Voters Registration Card, Drivers’ License and International Passports, or other valid official identification, before allowing such person passage.
The park was reopened for business immediately the military ended their operation in the park and people immediately resumed their different business activities.