Edo, Ondo elections: IGP orders clampdown on proliferation of prohibited firearms
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AHEAD of the governorship election in Ondo and Edo states, Mohammed Adamu, the Inspector General of Police (IGP) has ordered a nationwide clampdown on the proliferation of prohibited firearms.
The directive comes as part of preparations toward the forthcoming governorship elections in the two states.
Frank Mba, the Force Public Relations Officer, Force Headquarters, said in a statement on Sunday that the IGP ordered all Commissioners of Police in the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) to immediately initiate appropriate actions to identify, isolate, disarm, arrest and prosecute.
He said the directive had become necessary against the backdrop of the deliberate arming and movement of political thugs and other criminal elements across the country.
“As part of preparations toward the forthcoming gubernatorial elections in Edo and Ondo States, as well as efforts by the Police High Command to curb the proliferation of prohibited firearms in the country,” the statement read.
According to Mba, a Deputy Commissioner of Police, the State Commissioners were also ordered to address the unlawful possession of firearms in the country.
“In addition, the directive is 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,” he said.
“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 governorship election in Edo will hold on September 19 while that of Ondo State hold on October 13.
A total of 14 candidates will contest in Edo election while 17 governorship candidates are running in the Ondo polls.