From Molly Kilete, Abuja
The Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Adamu, has warned persons in possession of illegal arms and ammunition in the country to surrender them to the nearest police station or have themselves to blame when the law catches up with them.
Adamu said that the warning had become necessary following intelligence reports of the presence of a large quantity of unlawful firearms in the possession of some Nigerians.
The IGP, who made this known in a statement at the weekend, also placed an embargo on the issuance of new licenses for designated arms throughout the country with immediate effect.
The statement, signed by the force public relations officer, Frank Mba, also said that the police have concluded plans to embark on arms mopping-up operations across the country.
He said: “The Inspector-General of Police, Acting IGP Mohammed Adamu, has called on all Nigerians currently in unlawful possession of such weapons to immediately ensure a voluntary return of the weapons to police stations or public armoury nearest to them. The IGP has also, with immediate effect, placed an embargo on the issuance of new licenses for designated arms throughout the country. ”
“The IGP advises Nigerians to take advantage of the voluntary arms return window and do the right thing as there will be dire consequences for defaulters and those who fail to heed the call.
“Meanwhile, the Force has perfected plans to embark on a massive, nationwide joint arms mopping up operations. The operation which will be intelligent driven and target oriented, is designed to retrieve all illicit weapons in circulation, halt the on-going proliferation of weapons, restore law and order and bring perpetrators to justice.”