Troops of the 174 Motorised Battalion and an array of Toyota Hilux counterinsurgency patrol vehicles
Troops of the 174 Motorised Battalion and a mixed array of Chinese-built 3-ton counterinsurgency patrol trucks(assembled in Nigeria) and the said Toyota Hilux vehicles
PHOTO CREDIT: REUTERS
PHOTO CREDIT: STR/EPA
Pursuant to the execution of their alloted task of helping to give full effect to the State of Emergency proclaimed over Adamawa State, troops of the 174 Motorised Battalion of the 81 Division embarked on rapid overland deployment to Yola, the Adamawa State capital, a city in northeastern Nigeria which is situated 1,440 kilometres(900 miles) down the road from their Odogunyan barracks(Ikorodu) in Lagos. They departed at first light on Sunday 19 May, 2013.
Making a detour inside Kogi State and heading for Abuja, thereby adding a further 200 kilometres (125 miles) to the scheduled 1,440km Lagos-Yola travel itinerary, the troops eventually arrived in Yola at 0045 hrs on Monday, 20 May 2013.
They arrived in bullish mood and in a convoy of brand-new Toyota Hilux 4WD trucks which were specially configured for counterinsurgency operations in a novel design featuring hatches in their roofs from which GPMG-wielding soldiers can engage engage enemy targets and seats designed for seamless egress.
The soldiers also arrived in a handful of larger Chinese-built 3-ton trucks which were also similarly modified for the mission. Since 2012 and beginning with the Quick Response Group’s outposts on the Lokoja-Okene stretch of highway, the Nigerian Army have been deploying three streams of 3-tonners configured for rapid egress and featuring forward-facing swivel chairs from which machine gunners can fire their weapons from above the driver’s cabin.
Thus far, the said Chinese-built 3-tonner, Mitsubishi Fuso and Isuzu 3-ton trucks have been the base models for this configuration of specially modified counterinsurgency trucks. These 3-tonners have so far been spotted in Kogi State, in Kaduna enroute Mali and now in Adamawa, painted in olive, green camouflage and desert camouflage colour schemes respectively.
During the course of their tour of duty, the troops of 174 Motorised Battalion will be expected to work closely with troops of the 23 Armoured Brigade who are permanently stationed in Adamawa.
They have since began to deploy to the flashpoint districts of Mubi, Maiha, Madagali, Michika, Hong and Ganye Local Government Areas, with a special focus on dominating the mountains and porous borders which straddle the frontier with Cameroon and through which insurgents and terrorists have been infiltrating to wreak havoc on people in the conflict-affected areas.
Mubi, Madagali, Maiha and Michika LGAs
are located in the southern and central
sections of the Mandara Mountains while Ganye LGA is in the Alantika Mountains.