Troops of the Operation Whirl-Stroke (OPWS) of the Nigerian Army on Wednesday said they have uncovered an illegal arms manufacturing factory in Buruku Local Government Area of Benue State.
Force Commander of the OPWS, Major General Adeyemi Yekini, who disclosed this while parading the suspected arms manufacturers before journalists, also paraded 10 suspected criminals from neighbouring Nasarawa state who specialised in robbery, kidnapping and cattle rustling.
Parading the suspects at the OPWS Headquarters in Makurdi, General Yekini said six of the suspected criminals were arrested in Nasarawa while four others were arrested in Benue State.
“Three weeks ago, we had a briefing during which eight suspects were paraded. This afternoon, 10 new suspects are being paraded for armed banditry, kidnapping and cattle rustling in Benue and Nasarawa states,” he said.
Those paraded included one Seidu Muhammadu, a suspected kidnap kingpin and cattle rustler, along with two of his accomplices. Also, one Moses Dzever, a gang member of the wanted militia leader, Terwase Akwaza, alias ‘Gana’, with one other member responsible for Gana’s logistics who was also apprehended.
An arms manufacturer, Shekwa Terna, who was also paraded, confessed to the crime saying he went into arms manufacturing business about five years ago after learning the trade from his elder brother.
Terna, who spoke with newsmen, said: “I learnt the work from my elder brother who had earlier been apprehended. After his arrest, I took over the business. I was sleeping in my house when the OPWS came and arrested me. I sell the rifles to people in my community while the pistols I sell to a client from Onitsha”.