Almost 4,000 Illegal Firearms Transferred To Nigeria’s Weapons Control Centre

The thousands of seized firearms were transferred by the police to the country's weapons control agency.

Nigeria’s weapons control centre has received thousands of illegal firearms, including machine guns and rocket launchers, according to a police briefing on Feb. 16. 

A significant portion of the recovered weapons were assault rifles and locally fabricated pistols, projectile launchers, and shotguns.

Other firearms received by the National Centre for the Control of Small Arms and Light Weapons were FN MAG and PKM general-purpose machine guns and several RPD light machine guns alongside rocket launchers like the Type 69 and RPG-7. 

Police spokesperson Olumuyiwa Adejobi said the arms comprised “265 automatic rifles; 146 pump action guns; 1,909 locally fabricated pistols; 1,500 locally made single barrel guns; 98 locally made double barrel guns; 46 General Purpose Machine Guns (GPMGs); 16 locally made rocket launchers.” 

The statement also added that the centre received “two locally made Anti-Aircraft (AA) guns; and 7 Rocket Propelled Grenades (RPGs)”. 

Thousands of rounds consisting of “2,358 assorted calibres of ammunition and 1,057 assorted cartridges” were also handed over. Nigeria is struggling with widespread violence across the country, with the proliferation of firearms playing a significant role in fueling the crisis. They would also be a concern as the country prepares for general elections scheduled to be held between February and March this year.

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Murtala Abdullahi

Abdullahi Murtala is a researcher and reporter. His expertise is in conflict reporting, climate and environmental justice, and charting the security trends in Nigeria and the Lake Chad region. He founded the Goro Initiative and contributes to dialogues, publications and think-tanks that report on climate change and human security. He tweets via @murtalaibin

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