The Nigerian senate has ordered for the immediate destruction of firearms illegally imported into the country. This development is coming up shortly after the Nigerian customs has recorded seizures of over 2000 pump action rifles illegally imported into Nigeria from Turkey.
In a statement obtained by PoliticsNGR, the Senate president, Bukola Saraki disclosed that a bill to increase fines for illegally imported firearms, including firearms without valid licenses has passed a second reading in the Senate.
He stated; “The 8th Senate passed the Second Reading of the Bill to amend the Fire Arms Act to provide for the increase of fines and the destruction of all firearms that are illegally imported into the country or that are in the possession of individuals that do not have valid licenses.
With the recent reports of the Nigerian Customs Service finding 4 illegal shipments of firearms in the last few weeks, this Bill is pertinent, because, with its eventual passage, we will be strengthening the existing Fire Arms Act and making our nation safer.
Apart from the fines and other punitive measures that are imposed against individuals, we will also be looking at the laws that are currently in place to ensure that shipping agents and other companies that are involved in the importation of illegal firearms into the nation are held liable.
Now that the Bill has been sent to the Committee on Judiciary and Legal Matters for further work, we will be having a public hearing on this Bill, to seek the support of experts, security agencies and the general public in coming up with a thorough legislative strategy to combat the proliferation of weapons in our country and our communities.”