The Nigerian Air Force has carried out air strikes on at least three Benue State communities on Saturday, in an operation which lasted several hours reportedly intended to clear the hoodlums who attacked Maj Gen John Malu when he was home last week.
The air strikes by NAF jet fighters were carried out along the Katsina-Ala to Zaki Biam and Wukari Road and the affected villages included Gbise, Ayaka and environs.
NAF Director of Public Relations and Information, Air Vice Marshal Olatokunbo Adesanya, has confirmed the air strikes.
He however said that he could not divulge more details since the operation is still ongoing.
“It is true that the NAF aircrafts are involved in an operation together with other security services in Katsina-Ala. But the operation is still ongoing and I cannot disclose further details,” he said.
A source in Katsina-Ala told the Punch that the operation could be a reprisal on hoodlums who, dressed in military camouflage, had last week attacked the Commander of the Nigerian Army Engineering Corps, Maj Gen John Malu, in his hometown in Tse Adoor, Tiir Ward, Tongov in the Katsina-Ala LGA of Benue State.
The source said, “Gbise, Ayaka and other nearby villages in Katsina-Ala were on Saturday bombarded by the air force. These are reprisal attacks by the military to clear the hoodlums who attacked Maj Gen Malu when he was home last week.
“There were mortars, artillery pieces, assault rifles and aerial bombardments.”
The number of casualties could not be ascertained as at the time of filing this report.