The Nigerian Army recently made a significant breakthrough in the fight against cultism in Bayelsa State, as it apprehended eight individuals suspected to be members of a notorious cult group. The Director of Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Onyema Nwachukwu, announced this development in a statement released on Friday, October 20, 2023. He revealed that the successful raid operation was carried out by troops from the 16 Brigade as part of Exercise STILL WATERS III, targeting a cultists’ camp in Otuabagi community within the Ogbia Local Government Area.
During the operation, the troops recovered a Baretta pistol, a locally made double barrel pistol, five rounds of 9mm ammunition, and a quantity of cannabis from the suspects. This achievement comes as a result of the proactive approach taken by the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lieutenant General Taoreed Lagbaja, who recently launched various exercises across the country’s geopolitical zones to counter the rising insecurity leading up to the end of 2023.
The statement emphasized the positive outcomes of such exercises, stating that the raid operation in Otuabagi community is a testament to their effectiveness. Eight members of the suspected cult group were apprehended in their hideout, and in addition to the firearms and ammunition, the troops also seized three live cartridges, a Baofeng communication radio, a binocular, two mobile phones, and a substance believed to be cannabis from the culprits.
Currently, the apprehended suspects are in custody and undergoing further interrogation. This successful operation serves as a clear message that the Nigerian Army remains committed to safeguarding the peace and security of Bayelsa State, and the country as a whole.