The Police said yesterday that arms were being mopped up across the country ahead of the next year’s general elections.
“One major factor behind thuggery is the proliferation of illegal arms. As a result of this, we have been mopping up arms across the country”, police spokesman Frank Mba told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
He said many illegal arms had been discovered in Lagos State.
According to him, the police had placed surveillance on public armouries across the country and the nation’s borders to checkmate illegal possession of arms.
He said many black spots were also being raided nationwide.
“Police in other states are doing same. We are mounting surveillance on public armouries to check proliferation of light arms in wrong hands.
“The Marine police are checking our waters, particularly in the Niger Delta. We are checking local arms production”.
Mba said the police had also discovered some factories in Edo, Anambra and other places. “The arms and factories were destroyed”.
He spoke of plans to recover all illegal arms in the country for destruction.
Mba said the police were collaborating with the military, the Department of State Service (DSS), the Civil Defence Corps, Immigration, Customs and private security organisations to achieve set goals.
“As we speak, the Inspector General of Police has placed embargo on issuance of licence to individuals for arms. This is just one way to check arms in the country”, Mba said.
Mba said the IG had reduced the use of police escort by politicians and some private persons nationwide.
He said that surveillance had also been placed on politicians and private persons, with a view to checking anyone using police officers without permit.
“We should, however, note that some people are to be protected by the police because of their position in Nigeria. Even in developed world, the state provides special security for some people”, Mba added.