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Nigerian Army Captures Murder Suspects in Troubled Southern Kaduna State

Thwarted Kidnap Attempt Against Anglican Bishop

By Segun Onibiyo

As a demonstration of earnest commitment to quashing rampant violence in the badlands of the Middle Belt of Nigeria, The Nigerian Army has captured two suspected murderers of a Christian woman in Southern Kaduna State.  Ms. Dorathy Jonathan, a mother,  was murdered on Friday,  September 1,  2023 in cold blood while fetching firewood at Afana village in Zango Kataf county. Zango Kataf has been the venue of dozens of sectarian attacks by radicalized Muslim bandits and in rare cases, armed Christian militia have carried out reprisals.

In line with Commander Operation SAFE HAVEN (OPSH) Major General AE Abubakar’s resolve to bring all perpetrators of crime against the good people of Southern Kaduna and environs to justice, Army officers held a stakeholders meeting on September 10, after which troops of Operation Safe Haven captured the two suspected murderers on Sept. 14, according to an army spokesman.

Suspects Confessed

Bishop Paul Zamani, left, in Sambak Gida Village, Jaba County. Photo by Nigerian Army.
Bishop Paul Zamani, left, in Sambak Gida Village, Jaba County. Photo by Nigerian Army.

Mr. Lot Dauda reportedly confessed to have committed the crime alongside an accomplice, Abubaker Mato, according to the Army.  Both were arrested on September 14, 2023 through a manhunt launched by troops of ‘Operations SAFE HAVEN’ which acted on credible intelligence obtained from members of the public.

Dauda said that he approached Mrs. Dorathy while working on a farmland and attempted to rape the victim who put up a struggle and finally resulted in her gruesome murder, according to Army sources.

Following Dauda’s arrest, troops of Operation Safe Haven (OPSH)  arrested the second murder suspect, Mr. Abubakar Mato,  mentioned in the confessional statement obtained from Dauda earlier.

As part of the commitment of Operation SAFE HAVEN to secure communities in its Area of Responsibility, troops of OPSH also thwarted an attempt to kidnap Bishop Paul Zamani of Anglican Diocese at Sambak Gida village in Jaba  County [LGA] in Kaduna State. Kidnap for ransom of clergy of all denominations is at epidemic levels according to media reports.

Troops swiftly mobilized to the scene after receiving a distress call and exchanged fire with the kidnappers who fled with some suspected of carrying gunshot wounds.

The Commander of OPSH, Major General A.E. Abubakar, thanked the public for providing credible information leading to the arrest of the suspects and foiling the kidnap attempt.

He assured the public that the suspects would be expeditiously charged in court once investigations are concluded.

Nigerian military boasts of killing 151 terrorists, arresting 456 others in one week

The Nigerian Army vowed on Sept. 13  to crush all terrorists and bandits in trouble-prone areas of Kaduna, Plateau, Zamfara and Niger states.

Nigeria’s Army says it is winning the war against the insurgency that has crippled Nigeria for a decade, according to Maj. General Edward Buba, top army spokesman. At a press briefing in Abuja on Sept. 13, Buba told reporters the military has eliminated 151 terrorists, nabbed 456 others and rescued 76 kidnapped victims in different operations across the country in the last week.

“Troops also recovered 501 weapons, 3,577 livestock, 3,269 assorted kinds of ammunition and 674 other equipment within the period under review,” said Edward Buba, the director of Defense media operations.

Gen. Buba also boasted of regional military successes. “Operation Hadin Kai (cooperation) in the North has effectively curtailed Boko Haram and other terrorist activities in the region. Similarly, troops in “Operation Hadarin Daji (forest danger) and ‘Operation Whirl Punch’have made a significant impact in halting banditry and insurgency in the Northwest and North Central regions of the country. The criminalities perpetrated in the Southeast region by the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and Eastern Security Network (ESN) are being brought to the barest minimum through the activities of troops of “Operation Udo Ka (Peace is sovereign),” Buba said.

The good news from Nigeria’s Military will likely adorn the Nigerian briefing book prior to the anticipated meeting of Nigerian President Bola Tinubu and President Joe Biden on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly scheduled for Sept. 18 to 26 in New York.

Culled from Truth Nigeria


Segun Onibiyo serves as a broadcast journalist with Procyon Radio & Television in Kaduna and does political analysis for



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