The Minister of Interior, retired Lt.-Gen. Abdulrahman Dambazau, has called for strict enforcement of the law against illegal possession of firearms in the country.
Dambazau made the call as a guest at the monthly meeting of the Inspector-General of Police with Commissioners of Police and above on Wednesday in Abuja.
“We must ensure the enforcement of law against illegal possession of firearms in Nigeria.
“There is a huge number of illegal weapons in circulation in the country that come from Libya, Chad and Mali.
“Firearms is a driver to violence, so there is a need to address the current situation that we are in,”he said.
He said that the Nigeria Police had the capacity to fight crimes in the country which it had demonstrated in foreign operations in which its personnel took part.
He alleged that people who committed crimes in the country rarely faced prosecution and punishments for their acts.
The minister urged the police to take the issue of prosecution and conviction of criminals seriously to check crime rate in the country.
“We must do all that we can in the area of discreet investigation of cases.
“I am aware of the issue of funding, we cannot have a good police when the funds are not there,”he said.
He blamed the performance of some policemen on the process of recruitment where profiling of persons recruited was not thorough.
“Recruitment into the Nigeria Police Force is interfered with, these are issues we need to look at,”he said.
He urged the police to strengthen its relationship with the public for better service delivery to the people.
Dambazau also advised Nigerians to stop politicising the issue of security, adding that the police needed the support of the media and the public to discharge its responsibilities.
On herdsmen and farmers clashes, Dambazau said that there was a need for a multidimensional approach to address the problem.
He said that the issue was regional and not religious, but resource sharing that had to do with land and water.
The Minster said that the country was experiencing serious security challenges that were not new but of serious concern to the Federal Government.
“It is the responsibility of the Federal Government to provide adequate security for its citizens,”he said.