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Buhari approves establishment of centre for small arms control

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President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the establishment of a National Centre for the Control of Small Arms and Light Weapons.

This was contained in a statement issued by the Presidency via its verified Twitter handle on Monday.

It further disclosed that the Office of the National Security Adviser would be in charge of the mandate.

It read, “The NCCSALW replaces the defunct Presidential Committee on Small Arms and Light Weapons and shall serve as the institutional mechanism for policy guidance, research and monitoring of all aspects of Small Arms and Light Weapons in Nigeria.

“This decision is part of ongoing restructuring of Nigeria’s security architecture to address emerging threats and strengthen regional mechanism for the control, prevention and regulation of SALW.”

The statement further highlighted the negative ripple effects of the proliferation of SALW across Africa which has “resulted in terrorism, human trafficking, organized crime, and insurrections in West Africa and Nigeria.

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“Therefore, as one of the measures in tackling this threat, the new Centre will be fulfilling the requirements of the ECOWAS Moratorium on Import, Export, and Manufacture of Light Weapons as well as the UN Plan of Action to prevent, combat, and eradicate the illicit trade in SALW.

“The NCCSALW will serve as the National Focal Point on SALW in Nigeria and lead a multi-stakeholder process involving Government Ministries, Departments, Agencies and the Civil Society in implementing all national, UN and ECOWAS Plans of Action on the control of SALW.

“The Centre will maintain international cooperation and also operate zonal offices in the Six Geopolitical Zones to ensure quick response and effective mobilization of resources.”

Retired Major General AM Dikko has been appointed by President Buhari as the National Coordinator of the centre.

“The pioneer National Coordinator, Rtd Major General AM Dikko has served in various capacities in and outside Nigeria. He was a Course Director at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Centre and Chief Instructor of the Nigerian Army Peacekeeping Centre”.

By Mayowa Oladeji…

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