Bayelsa State-based headquarters of the Joint Force in the Niger Delta code-named Operation Pulo Shield has confirmed the killing of two of its soldiers by a gang of militants along the Ogbia-Nembe Road in the state on Tuesday 5 April 2016.
The co-ordinator, Joint Media Campaign Centre of the security outfit, Isa Ado, a colonel, confirmed the death of the two soldiers in a release on Wednesday he made available to reporters in Yenagoa.
He also confirmed that the hoodlums abducted one expatriate while another, both personnel of Setraco, the firm handling the construction of the Ogbi-Nembe Road project, was saved from being taken hostage.
Ado had evaded enquiries by journalists on the incident after it happened on Tuesday.
He said the deceased soldiers were among the operatives of the Joint Force on security detail to the company, saying the operatives made spirited efforts to repel the hoodlums but the two soldiers lost their lives in the attack.
The bandits were said to have operated a speed boat through a creek from where they ambushed the soldiers and escaped after the attack.The deceased soldiers fell to their bullets and died on the spot, sources had said.
Ado said, “It could be recalled that on 5th April 2016 suspected sea pirates attacked construction company workers along Ogbia Nembe road in Bayelsa State.
“Two soldiers on security detail attached to the company put spirited efforts to stop the abduction of an expatriate working with the company but lost their lives during the encounter while an expatriate taken hostage”.
He however disclosed that a suspected member of the militant gang that ambushed the soldiers was killed in an encounter while ‘many’ of the militants were ‘wounded’ on Tuesday during a swift reaction to rescue the abducted expatriate and arrest the perpetrators along the Soku Gas plant in Nembe Local Government Area of the state.
“Three suspects were arrested but claimed to be victims of the pirates attack.
“Equipment recovered from the criminals during the encounter includes two AK47 automatic assault rifles and 10 magazine loaded with 7.62mm special ammunition.
“Troops had dominated the creeks and land trotting highly intensified in its efforts to rescue the abducted expatriate and apprehend the kidnappers”, he added.