Ihuoma Chiedozie, Enugu
The Nigerian Army on Sunday said Operation Python Dance, which is currently going on in the South-East, would be staged in the region every year.
Deputy Director, Public Relations 82 Division, Nigerian Army, Enugu, Col. Sagir Musa, disclosed this in a statement entitled ‘The objectives of exercise Egwu Eke 11 (Python Dance II).
The army spokesman insisted that the military campaign was not targeted at anybody, or group.
“Exercise Egwu Eke II (Python Dance II) is now a scheduled Nigerian Army Exercise to be conducted annually in the South-East Region and is not targeted at any individual or group.
“Law abiding citizens need not to fear and are advised to freely go about their normal businesses,” Musa said.
He explained that the first episode of the military operation, which held in 2016, was successful.
“The first exercise Python Dance was successfully and commendably conducted in the South-East from 27 November to 27 December 2016.
“The peculiar security challenges in the region, such as kidnappings, abductions, violent seccessionist agitations, armed robbery, farmers/herdsmen clashes, communal crisis and an extraordinarily annual traffic gridlock at the Asaba-Onitsha bridge among others which are the focus and targets of the exercise were then successfully addressed,” he said.
Musa further explained that Operation Python Dance was a training exercise designed to improve soldiers’ agility and preparedness.
He said, “The concept of the current exercise, like the previous one, is purely command post, field training and real-time exercise.
“It is aimed to enhance troops’ agility and preparedness across the spectrum of contemporary and emerging security threats peculiar to South-Eastern region.
“The exercise is three in one in that it was deliberately designed as a command post exercise that transmuted into field training exercise and where necessary, it can dovetail into real-time mission or activities such as anti-kidnapping drills, patrols, raids, cordon and search, check points, road blocks and show of force.”