FG to establish arms control centres across geopolitical zones
The federal government has stated that offices for the National Centre for the Control of Small Arms and Light Weapons (NCCSALW) will be established acrosa the six geopolitical zones of the country.
This was contained in a statement issued on Tuesday by director of strategic communications and information (NCCSALW), Ewejide Akintunde.
Recall that President Muhammadu Buhari in May approved the establishment of the centre and appointed Abba Dikko, a major general as pioneer coordinator of the NCCSALW.
According to the statement, Lucky Irabor, chief of defence staff; Oladayo Amao, chief of air staff; and Usman Baba, inspector general of police (IGP), have expressed their commitment to support the centre to deliver on its mandate.
The security chiefs pledged their support during separate courtesy visits by the NCCSALW national coordinator to their offices in Abuja.
Dikko while speaking when he paid a courtesy visit to the security chiefs said the effective functioning of the centre will depend on the support and cooperation of security agencies, bearing in mind that the activities of the centre will “be hinged primarily on the existing capacity, processes and procedures enshrined in the duties and responsibilities of the force”.
“He further stated that the Centre seeks to galvanise the whole-of-nation support in order to bring on board stakeholders and civil society organisations in line with the guidelines enshrined in the UN and ECOWAS protocols,” the statement reads.
“The Coordinator said that the NCCSALW will aggregate all weapons and related materials that have been mopped up from the society and manage the stockpile leading up to its destruction.
“Dikko also said the Centre plans to institutionalise the process of marking all weapons holdings of security agencies, and maintain a national database that would help to keep track of all small arms and light weapons in the country to ensure traceability in case the weapons fall into the wrong hands.”
In response, Irabor congratulated Dikko on his appointment and noted that the significant reduction of illicit arms flow is the collective responsibility of all stakeholders.
Irabor also urged the centre to remain resolute until they attain success in their mission.
On his part, Amao, chief of air staff, spoke on the need for intelligence sharing, which he said is key to the actualisation of the objectives of the centre.
In his remarks, the IGP pledged his full support to the centre in the areas of intelligence sharing and capacity development.