The Office of the Presidency responded has to comments by the Ondo State governor, Rotimi Akeredolu that vigilantes in Katsina state were allowed to purchase automatic weapons.
In a statement by Garba Shehu, media aide to the president, he stated that no state, not Katsina, not any other state in the federation has been authorized to procure automatic weapons for their security outfits.
They added that nobody is allowed to illegally carry AK-47 or any other automatic weapons and that they must surrender them.
What they said:
“The Presidency wishes to strongly assert that there is no state, not Katsina, not any other state in the federation has been authorized to procure automatic weapons for their security outfits.
“Under this administration, the president has repeatedly made it clear that nobody is allowed to illegally carry AK-47 or any other automatic weapons and that they must surrender them.
“Where they fail to do so, the law enforcement agencies have been given clear directives to deal with any such outlaws.
“Under the existing regulations, only the Office of the National Security Adviser can issue such authorization, upon proper clearance by the President and Commander-in-Chief and as it is at this moment, no such approvals have been issued to any state government.
In the specific Katsina State often cited, the Governor, Aminu Bello Masari wrote to explain that the administration invited the Provost of the Civil Defence Training College in Katsina to train their Vigilantes for a five-day period “in the handling and operations of Pump Action Rifles,” emphasizing that “the Vigilantes were not trained to take over the responsibilities of the security agencies of the Federal Government of Nigeria but to assist them” they added
The Presidency said it appreciates the active involvement of states with security matters and expressed happiness that in the last couple of years, security outfits mandated by state governments have been associated with several important initiatives, and reports have reached him of acts of utmost bravery and professionalism.
What you should know
Nairametrics reported last week that the governor of Ondo State has accused the Buhari-led federal government of double standards in its treatment of state-owned security agencies with the granting of a security outfit in Katsina State the right to bear arms whilst same privilege has not been granted to Amotekun Corps.
Akeredolu insisted on buying arms for the security outfit in the state as it is his decision to fulfil his administration’s legal, constitutional and moral duty to the citizens of the state with such action.
Download Nairametrics App for breaking news and market intelligence.