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FG to set up civilian component of JTF in Niger Delta — Dan-Alli



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THE Federal Government has advocated the setting up of a civilian component of the Joint Task Force (JTF) Operation Delta State in order to effectively combat economic crimes in the Niger Delta region.

Minister of Defense, Mansur Mohammed Dan-Alli, stated this during a courtesy call on Governor Henry Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State at Government House, Yenagoa.
Dan-Alli was accompanied on the courtesy visit by the Chief of Defense Staff (CDS), Alani Olonishakin, the JTF commander, Joseph Okogie, and other top military officers.

Dickson who was represented by his deputy, John Gboribiogha Jonah, said there is no alternative to the involvement of communities in the struggle as it is difficult for strangers to launch into the creeks.

Dickson pointed out that a good control of the state will help in curbing incursions from neighbouring Delta and Rivers states while urging the military to identify and man choke points to ease their job as the military has higher firepower.

He reiterated calls for the establishment of two battalions in the state at Nembe and Sagbama with a brigade headquarters in Yenagoa to address security concerns at both the east and wester flanks of the state.

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According to him, the greatest challenge confronting the military is the issue of logistics stressing the need to guarantee fueling while pledging the cooperation of the state to reduce economic crimes to the barest minimum.

Earlier, Dan-Alli explained that he was in the state to see to the welfare of officers and how to improve logistics while calling on Bayelsa State Government for support in routing dangerous elements from the creeks.

According to him, ex-militants who have received training will play a role in the civilian component of the JTF saying all stakeholders should be involved in the new security architecture.

Dan-Alli disclosed that as part of efforts to tackle the challenge, there will be constant movement of officers and men serving in the state in order to address the issue of compromise among them.

He further disclosed that he was in the state to determine websites that spread rumour and cast officers in bad light pointing out that the overall agenda is to solicit support for the “Unification of the Nation.”