A Nigerian Army officer, Major Christopher Datong, has regained his freedom after 25 days within the captivity of bandits who invaded the Nigerian Defence Academy, Kaduna State.
The Nigerian army in a launch on Saturday morning claimed that safety forces rescued Datong, though army sources mentioned the rescue was not with out cost of ransom to the dare-devil bandits.
The bandits had invaded the army coaching establishment on August 24, 2021, killing two officers, and injuring one different whereas Datong was kidnapped.
FLASH: A Nigerian Army Major, Christopher Datong who was kidnapped from the Nigerian Defence Academy in August by bandits in Kaduna has been freed pic.twitter.com/nAWjWQSFg1
— Sahara Reporters (@SaharaReporters) September 18, 2021
An announcement issued at about 12: 15am on Saturday by the spokesman of the 1 Division, Nigerian Army Kaduna, Col. Ezindu Idimah, mentioned the Division, along with the Air Task Force, the Department of State Services (DSS) and different safety businesses performed the operation which led to the rescue of the officer who was held captive for 25 days.
The assertion added that Datong sustained a minor damage in the course of the operation and was handled at a medical facility earlier than he was handed over to the authorities of the NDA “for further action.”
The assertion titled ‘Troops rescued Major CL Datong’ learn: “Following the directive of the Chief of Defence Staff and Service Chiefs for 1 Division Nigerian Army in conjunction with the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) and all security agencies to conduct decisive operations to rescue Major C. L. Datong, who was abducted at Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA) Permanent Site on 24 August 2021 and find the perpetrators dead or alive, the Division in conjunction with the Air Task Force, Department of State Services and other security agencies, immediately swung into action by conducting operations in the Afaka general area to find and rescue the officer.
“The operations were being conducted based on several leads received from various sources regarding the abductors and likely locations the officer was being held.
“The operations which have been sustained since the abduction of the officer proved quite successful and led to the destruction of several identified bandits’ camps in the Afaka-Birnin Gwari general area and neutralisation of scores of bandits particularly, in the late hours of today, 17 September, 2021, the troops arrived at a camp suspected to be the location where Maj C. L. Datong was being held.
“At the camp, the troops exchanged fire with the bandits and overwhelmed them with superior fire. In the process, the gallant troops were able to rescue the abducted officer.
“However, the officer sustained a minor injury but has been treated in a medical facility and handed over to NDA for further action.
“The Division wishes to commend the efforts of the NAF, DSS, Nigerian Police and patriotic Nigerians for their invaluable support which contributed to the success of this operation.
“Our operations will continue until we capture or neutralise the assailants that killed two (2) officers in the NDA on 24 August 2021.”
SaharaReporters had reported on August 25 that the bandits initially demanded N200million for the kidnapped army officer.
It had additionally been learnt that a few of Datong’s colleagues and mates within the Nigerian Army secretly raised a ransom for his launch, though the army authorities had been silent on risk of negotiations or ransoms.