Arms Control Centre: 6,000 Illegal Weapons Found and Destroyed in Nigeria Between 2021 and 2023

Apr 23, 2024 | International | 0 comments

The National Centre for the Control of Small Arms and Light Weapons (NCCSALW) announced that at least 6,000 illicit and obsolete small arms and light weapons have been recovered and destroyed across Nigeria between 2021 and 2023 in efforts to curb the proliferation of small arms.

The Southeast zonal coordinator of NCCSALW, Retired General Okechukwu Ugo, revealed this during a one-day seminar held in Enugu on Thursday, aimed at curbing the proliferation of small arms and light weapons.

Ugo stated that the recovery of SALW had significantly contributed to preventing such arms from falling into the wrong hands, thus thwarting militancy and insurgency.

He added, “As of today, the Centre has recovered and destroyed over 6,000 illicit and obsolete SALW from various security agencies and operational theaters around the country. These recoveries and destruction exercises, which are in line with UN conventions, have contributed immensely to preventing the recycling of these illicit arms back into our society, thereby enhancing safety and security in Nigeria and globally.”

He further emphasized, “The National Centre for the Control of Small Arms and Light Weapons, realizing the need for sub-regional, regional, and global partnerships in this fight against the menace of illicit arms, has engaged and continues to engage various international stakeholders in the field. For instance, the Centre recently hosted representatives of all countries of the Lake Chad Basin Commission to a two-day conference in Abuja to fashion out ways of sharing intelligence to ensure that cross-border trafficking and illicit trade of SALW are checkmated. The Centre also participates in various regional and global fora on SALW under the auspices of ECOWAS, AU, and UN regularly to ensure that Nigeria conforms to global best practices in this regard.”

In a goodwill message at the occasion, the General Officer Commanding 82 Division of the Nigerian Army, Gen. Hassan Dada, represented by the Garrison Commander of 82 Division, Gen. M. M. Abu, said weapons needed not to be left in the hands of unauthorized persons.

According to Dada, all hands should be on deck to recover small arms and light weapons from society.

Enugu State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Kanayo Uzuegbu, represented by Onyeamu Akame, while expressing dismay at the proliferation of illicit arms in the country, warned the political class to desist from arming the youths to execute elections.

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