The National Taskforce on Small Arms, Light and Chemical Weapons has alleged that some politicians have been stockpiling ammunition ahead of general elections. The Director-General of the force, Dr Emmanuel Okereke, who made the allegation in Abuja at a news conference on Tuesday said this was due to the porous nature of the nation’s borders and the non-existence of a specific agency or commission to tackle the menace.
According to him, for Nigeria to effectively tackle this menace, a National Commission for the Prohibition of Illegal Importation of Small Arms, must be established as already done by other West African countries except Nigeria and Gambia.
According to him, 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, which Nigeria refused to comply with.
The Director General explained that even before the ECOWAS ‘s resolution, a bill for the establishment of such commission has long been sponsored. The bill which is currently in the 8th Senate, has passed second reading in the House of Representatives, but not yet in the senate.
Okereke said the commission, when established, would not be a burden on the finances of the country but rather a revenue earner. He called on the Senate to fast-track action on the bill for the commission to be in place as soon as possible.