Despite objections from the leaders of Ohaneze regarding military operation in the South-East, the Nigerian Army says it is here to stay.

Operation 'Egwu Eke', which was opposed by members of IPOB will hold annually until cases of kidnapping, herdsmen attack on farmers and secessionists activities end.  

Deployment of troops in the region for the exercise also referred to as Python Dance, triggered crisis in Aba, the home town of the leader of the IPOB, Nnamdi Kanu.

Several persons where killed while over 50 people were arrested by the police.

Although members of the IPOB believe Egwu Eke was launched to end its agitation for self-rule, the spokesman for the 82 Division Nigerian Army, Colonel Sagir Musa, insists the exercise is not targeted at any individual or group.

Also Read: Arrested IPOB Members Will Be Prosecuted For Murder, Arson

“Please note, Exercise Egwu Eke (Python Dance) II, is now a scheduled Nigerian Army exercise to be conducted annually in the South-East region.

“Exercise Egwu Eke, which started fully on the 15 September to 14 October 2017, is a normal routine Nigerian Army Field Training Exercise meant to sharpen the skills of the participating troops in the conduct of Internal Security Operations,” the statement read.

The Army had said the exercise was aimed at combating security challenges in the South-East and dealing with the rising cases of kidnappings, farmers-herdsmen clashes, secessionist agitations, insurgency of any kind and other vices.

“For emphasis, it is necessary to restate that the exercise and similar ones with different code names in some parts of the country were deliberately initiated and conducted with an overarching aim of checkmating identified security challenges prevalent in the regions where they were carried out,” the statement added.

The military had conducted the the first “Exercise Python Dance” in the region in 2016 which it said was successful and commendable.

Watch what people at newspaper stand discuss about Biafra.