As aprt of measures to mitigate electoral violence before, during and after forthcoming election in Edo and Ondo States, the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, has ordered nationwide clampdown on proliferation of prohibited firearms across the nation.
As stated, Commissioners of Police in the thirty-six States of the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) were also ordered to immediately initiate appropriate actions to identify, isolate, disarm, arrest and prosecute any individual or group in possession of prohibited firearms.
He explained that the directive had become imperative following deliberate arming and movement of political thugs and other criminal elements across the country.
The police boss said that the move was in line with efforts by the Police High Command to curb the proliferation of prohibited firearms in the country and enurse a violence free gubernatorial elections in Edo and Ondo states respectively.
Adamu, through a statement by the Force Public Relations Officer on Sunday, Frank Mba, said that the directive is also targeted at addressing the proliferation and unlawful possession of prohibited firearms in the country which is contrary to the provisions of Chapter F.28 LFN 2004 of the Firearms Act.
“In a similar vein, Commissioners of Police in all the States of the Federation and the FCT have been directed to immediately convene an enlightenment meeting of all vigilante groups and quasi security outfits spread across the country in order to ensure that their activities are in conformity with the extant laws guiding their establishment and operations.
“The IGP, while observing that several civil groups – vigilantes, quasi states and regional security outfits under various guises are arming themselves with prohibited firearms and weapons in contravention of the provisions of the Firearms Act, notes that the trend if unchecked, will pose serious threat to national security,” the statement read.
The IGP while noting that the directive was aimed at ensuring safety of lives and property across the country, enjoined citizens to cooperate with the Police in during the enforcement.