NATFORCE raises alarm over arms stockpiling ahead of election

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The Director General of National Taskforce on Small Arms, Light and Chemical Weapons (NATFORCE), Dr Emmanuel Okereke, raised the alarm over stockpiling of arms and ammunitions ahead of general election.

In this regard, serving governors and other political stakeholders have been accused of perpetrating this act.

Okereke said the alleged stockpiling of ammunition by desperate politicians ahead of the poll which is around the corner, was made possible by the deteriorating state of Nigeria’s border and absence of a explicit body to tackle the menace.

He said “Due to lack of a legally established specific body or commission as obtainable in 14 out of the 16 countries in the West African Subregion, all manner of ammunition have been illegally brought into the country ahead of the coming elections by high class political players including some state governors”.

He noted that for Nigeria to tackle the menace, a National Commission for the Prohibition of Illegal Importation of Small Arms, Ammunition and Light Weapons and other related matters, must be established as already done by other West African countries except Nigeria and Gambia.

He added that the Commission was recommended for all West African Countries through a resolution passed to that effect by the Economic Community of West Africa States (ECOWAS) in December, 2017.

He said “Unfortunately, while 14 out of the 16-member sub regional body have complied, Nigeria and Gambia are yet to do the needful in that direction”.

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